The Impact of Syrian Refugees on Natives' Labor Market Outcomes in Turkey: Evidence from a Quasi-Experimental Design

49 Pages Posted: 12 Oct 2015

See all articles by Evren Ceritoglu

Evren Ceritoglu

Government of the Republic of Turkey - Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey

H. Gurcihan Yunculer

Government of the Republic of Turkey - Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey

Huzeyfe Torun

Government of the Republic of Turkey - Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey

Semih Tumen

TED University; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Abstract

Civil war in Syria, which started in March 2011, has led to a massive wave of forced immigration from the Northern Syria to the Southeastern regions of Turkey. This paper exploits this natural experiment to estimate the impact of Syrian refugees on the labor market outcomes of natives in Turkey. Using a difference-in-differences strategy, we find that immigration has considerably affected the employment outcomes of natives, while its impact on wage outcomes has been negligible. We document notable employment losses among informal workers as a consequence of refugee inflows. The majority of those who lost their informal jobs have either left the labor force or remained unemployed. Overall, unemployment rates have increased, while labor force participation, informal employment, and job finding rates have declined among natives. Disadvantaged groups – i.e., females, younger workers, and less-educated workers – have been affected the worst. The prevalence of informal employment in the Turkish labor markets has amplified the negative impact of Syrian refugee inflows on natives' labor market outcomes.

Keywords: informality, labor market, Turkey, immigration, Syrian civil war, difference in differences

JEL Classification: J15, J21, J46, J61, C21

Suggested Citation

Ceritoglu, Evren and Gurcihan Yunculer, H. and Torun, Huzeyfe and Tumen, Semih, The Impact of Syrian Refugees on Natives' Labor Market Outcomes in Turkey: Evidence from a Quasi-Experimental Design. IZA Discussion Paper No. 9348, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2672134

Evren Ceritoglu

Government of the Republic of Turkey - Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey

Istiklal Cad. 10 Ulus
06100 Ankara, Ankara 06050
Turkey

H. Gurcihan Yunculer

Government of the Republic of Turkey - Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey

Istiklal Cad. 10 Ulus
06100 Ankara, Ankara 06050
Turkey

Huzeyfe Torun

Government of the Republic of Turkey - Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey ( email )

Istiklal Cad. 10 Ulus
06100 Ankara, Ankara 06050
Turkey

Semih Tumen (Contact Author)

TED University ( email )

Ziya Gokalp Bulvari No: 48
Kolej Çankaya, Ankara 06420
Turkey

IZA Institute of Labor Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

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