Emigration and Alcohol Consumption Among Migrant Household Members Staying Behind: Evidence from Kyrgyzstan

52 Pages Posted: 28 Jan 2019

See all articles by Sara Paulone

Sara Paulone

University of Siena

Artjoms Ivlevs

University of Nottingham - Leverhulme Centre for Research on Globalisation and Economic Policy (GEP)

Abstract

Despite the growth of alcohol consumption and international migration in many developing countries, the links between the two remain underexplored. We study the relationship between emigration of household members, receiving remittances (migrant monetary transfers), and alcohol consumption of migrant household members staying behind in Kyrgyzstan, a poor post-socialist country that has recently witnessed both large-scale emigration and a rise in alcohol-related health problems. Using a large longitudinal survey, we find that, among the ethnic majority (Kyrgyz), an increase in migrant remittances is associated with a higher likelihood and frequency of consuming alcohol, as well as an increase in the consumption of beer.Among ethnic Russians, the emigration of family members who do not send remittances back home is associated with an increased likelihood and frequency of alcohol consumption. We discuss possible mechanisms through which emigration and remittances may affect the alcohol consumption of those staying behind, including the relaxation of budget constraints and psychological distress. Overall, our findings suggest that the emigration of household members contribute to a greater alcohol consumption among those staying behind, and highlight the role of remittances and cultural background in understanding the nuances in this relationship.

Keywords: emigration, alcoholism, Kyrgyzstan, Central Asia, monetary remittances, social remittances

JEL Classification: F22, F24, J61, I12

Suggested Citation

Paulone, Sara and Ivlevs, Artjoms, Emigration and Alcohol Consumption Among Migrant Household Members Staying Behind: Evidence from Kyrgyzstan. IZA Discussion Paper No. 12075. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3323190

Sara Paulone (Contact Author)

University of Siena

Via Banchi di Sotto, 55
Siena, 53100
Italy

Artjoms Ivlevs

University of Nottingham - Leverhulme Centre for Research on Globalisation and Economic Policy (GEP) ( email )

University Park
Nottingham, NG7 2RD
United Kingdom
+44 (0)115 846 8417 (Phone)
+44 (0)115 951 4159 (Fax)

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