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Is It Merely a Labor Supply Shock? Impacts of Syrian Migrants on Local Economies in Turkey

Doruk Cengiz and Hasan Tekgüç

The authors use the occurrence of a large and geographically varying inflow of more than 2.5 million Syrian migrants to Turkey between 2012 and 2015 to study the effect of migration on local economies. They do not find adverse employment or wage effects for native-born Turkish workers overall or for those without a high school degree. These results are robust to a range of strategies to construct reliable control groups. To explain the findings, the authors document the importance of three migration-induced demand channels: the complementarity between native and migrant labor, housing demand, and increased entrepreneurial activities.

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