International Law of Economic Migration - A Ménage À Trois? GATS Mode 4, EPAs and Bilateral Migration Agreements
University of Bern Law School
July 2, 2010
Journal of World Trade, Vol. 44, No. 6, 2010
Society of International Economic Law (SIEL), Second Biennial Global Conference, University of Barcelona, July 8-10, 2010
International economic migration is steered by the vertical interplay of migration-related agreements at three levels: the multilateral opening of labour markets in GATS mode 4, its regional replicas of preferential trade agreements and bilateral migration schemes. We observe a horizontal fragmentation, whereby bilateral migration agreements “correct” the high-skill bias of national immigration laws, while trade agreements liberalize the temporary movement of natural persons in highly skilled services occupations. Combining elements of both are economic partnership agreements (EPAs). The GATS Article II (MFN) brings about coherence, as it lifts the pressure from the classic corridors of migration, which bilateral migration agreements have tended to cement.
Presented at the SIEL 2010 Conference in Barcelona.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 41
Keywords: International economic migration, GATS Mode 4, EPAs, Bilateral Migration Agreements, Trade agreements, Labour markets, immigration, migration, Guest worker, wage differentials
JEL Classification: F02, F12, F13, F15, F20, F22
Date posted: July 4, 2010 ; Last revised: March 22, 2011