What is The Difference Between Migration and Immigration?
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People all around the world love to move around or relocate for whatever reasons. But, the question here is, what is the difference between migration and immigration?
Every country constitutes native inhabitants and foreigners living together. Migration and immigration, though, have been regarded as the same by the public for a long time. Though either of the words’ primary meanings defines the same, i.e., movement of people or relocation from one place to another, the subjects involved like Who?, When?, and Where? marks the difference between Immigration and Migration.
So, in this article, we will come to know what is the difference between migration and immigration and other related information.
Migration and immigration differences
Migration is referred to as a broader term with respect to the relocation segment, while immigration is a far narrower concept to it. As immigration does fall under the basket of migration, while the migration is not just limited to the former. Immigration defines the movement of a person as an individual or as a family from the origin country to a new country, ensuring formalities with the embassy. While migration is the movement of an individual or bird from one place to another, it could be internal (within the country) or international (across borders).
Unlike immigration, migration does not only adhere to an individual or family but rather to larger groups or demographics. The table below helps us identify and understand the nuances among the terms.
|Type of Movement||Immigration is done permanently||Migration is mostly temporary like seasonal moments and rarely leads to be permanent|
|Person is termed as||Immigrant||Migrant|
|Place of Movement||Relocation is to International destinations only||Relocation is done Internal i.e. within a country or internationally i.e. across the borders|
|Individuals Involved||Immigration involves movement as a single person or family relocation||While migration is mostly done as a group of people (not a single or family relocation)|
|Example||1. Indian students moving abroad, to study and find a job opting for PR in foreign countries like Canada, USA, UK, etc.||1. Kashmir Pandits moving out of J&K to Hindu-dominated cities or areas in India.
2. Indian laborers migrate to the UAE for better economic benefits and opportunities.
Now that we have been able to figure out what exactly is migration and immigration, let us further discuss the terms migrant and immigrant and what is the difference between migration and immigration.
What is the difference between migration and immigration?
As we identified above, immigration is a segment of migration, so it is feasible to say that a migrant can be termed an immigrant, but vice versa is not the case. Moreover, migrants include both emigrants and immigrants.
What is a Migrant?
A migrant is termed as an individual who leaves their home and relocates from one place to another out of willingness. He/she is purposefully on the move in search of a better life but is free to return back to their origins when they please (temporary movement).
Migrants include people who are –
- Migrating internally, from one region to another within the borders of their residing country.
- Move from their country of birth to a different country or country.
What is an Immigrant?
An immigrant is a person who leaves their country of origin and enters another country legally, where they are allowed to work without restrictions and are granted to settle down permanently. Immigration is as well an act out of willingness same as migration.
The reasons for wanting to settle down in a new country can be many, a few of the major reasons being economic prosperity, better quality education, prosperity, to be reunited with family. The categories of immigrants include:
1. Permanent resident
Permanent residents are legal residents, not yet citizens of their new country. To apply for citizenship, an individual needs to have a PR (acquired through the job, family relationship, or other channels). The PR status does not have an expiry; as a result, not many holders go for Naturalization like many people who look for Canada PR.
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2. Naturalized citizen
The individuals who after a certain period of time as PR, can apply for Naturalization and acquire the responsibilities and benefits of citizenship in the country. Few countries like the USA and Mexico have the feasibility to maintain their birth citizenship, but countries like China strictly prohibit dual citizenship.
3. Twilight statuses
Twilight or liminal legal statuses protect the people who otherwise are unauthorized immigrants from deportation, allowing them to work for a temporary period. For eligibility, the person needs to meet the criteria requirements, like being present in the country since a given date or certain time and having a criminal record that is just a minor one. These as well include asylum seekers as well who get authorized to work with still pending application processes.
Also called irregular, undocumented, illegal, or clandestine, unauthorized immigrants are the people who are unlawfully present in the country, be it they had an illegal entry or overstayed a visa.
Now that we have a clear idea about migration and immigration and their nuances, moving further, let us understand what emigration is and what is the difference between emigration and immigration. Migration and immigration both have been terms that we would be known with respect to the new country, while emigration is more about our reference to the departing county.
Emigration vs. Immigration
Emigration refers to leaving one country from another on a voluntary basis for different reasons like political, economic, personal, or any other. In case of forced emigration, it is known as deportation.
Both the terms emigration and immigration are derived from Latin, while emigration is derived from “emigro” meaning ‘move out’, immigration is derived from the word “immigro” meaning ‘move in’.
What is the difference between emigrant and immigrant?
There is not much difference between emigrant and immigrant and the interesting point to note here is that both terms can be used for the same person. However, the major differentiating factor is the act of moving, i.e., in or out. So, what is an emigrant vs immigrant?
An emigrant is a person who moves out of the country and an immigrant is a person who moves in to settle down in the country. Let us try to understand this using an example: if a person is moving from country A to country B for whichever reason, then to the fellow citizen of country A, the person will be an emigrant and for the citizens of country B, he will be an immigrant.
Effects of Emigration
When a person ‘move out’ of a country to ‘move in’ into another, he surely creates an impact in either of the countries. Depending on the factors, these effects can be termed positive or negative. Some of them are mentioned below:
The employment rate factor can be termed positive and negative both, but with respect to whom we refer it to. It’s not an unknown fact that the number of people available for jobs is way higher compared to the jobs available in the market. So, when a person emigrates from a country, this creates space for the opportunity for others who would rather be filled by the former or reduced competition. Emigration also helps in filling jobs, like jobs in Canada are filled by immigrants. But in the case of skilled or intelligent people, the origin country faces a loss of their credentials because their ideas, insights, and potential will be utilized to flourish in the other(destination) country.
Emigration hugely affects the wage system in the country. If the case is of shortage of labor or workforce, it results in high wages, but if the market is oversaturated, the wages remain the same irrespective of the potential available. This situation is very different for emigrants and immigrants, as, with the arrival of immigrants, the local citizens may face the negative effects of wages as a result of an increasing pool of available employees.
Since an emigrant subsequently won’t be paying taxes to their country, this would intern affect the support and resources received. As a result, generally, people pay more taxes compared to their usage. Realizing this, the system of the country is failing to lure the emigrants with access to benefits (which they potentially might lose) and this, in turn, dramatically impacts or suffers the country’s economy(budget).
In countries suffering from overpopulation, emigrants are a blessing as departure results in better availability of resources. But if the situation is the opposite, like already less population emigration, it has a significant effect (in a destructive manner) on the country.
Immigration, emigration, and migration are all terms that depict the picture of moving or relocating an individual. The terms, however, hold their classifications which define where the individual or individuals are categorized. For the most part, developed countries generally become immigration destinations.
As per “Immigration by Country 2022” by World Population Review, the United States America has the highest number of immigrants, followed by Germany, Saudi Arabia, Russia, United Kingdom, UAE, France, Canada, Australia, and Spain, respectively, in the top 10 immigration destinations. Irrespective of being an immigrant or migrant or emigrant, they bring forth an impact being positive or negative, not only to themselves but to the country as well.
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