Open for Business

Migrant Entrepreneurship in OECD Countries

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Migrants contribute to the economic growth of their host countries in many ways, bringing new skills and competencies with them and helping to reduce labour shortages.  An aspect that has received only limited attention up to now is migrants’ contribution to entrepreneurial activity and employment creation in their host countries.  In OECD countries, entrepreneurship is slightly higher among immigrants than natives and the total number of persons employed in migrant businesses is substantial, although the survival rate of these businesses is often lower than that of their native counterparts. Migrant entrepreneurship has gone beyond traditional ethnic businesses, into a wide range of sectors and innovative areas.

Greater knowledge of migrant entrepreneurship is essential if policy makers are to better support migrant enterprises and their role in economic growth and job creation. In addition, increasing awareness of the positive role that migrants can play as entrepreneurs could contribute to a more balanced public debate on immigration.   Taking a cross-country perspective, this publication sheds light on these issues and more, discussing policy options to foster the development and success of migrant businesses. It is a compilation of papers presented at a June 2010 conference organised by the OECD Secretariat, with the financial support of the Swedish and Turkish authorities, and the Dutch-Turkish Businessmen Association (HOTIAD).


Latina entrepreneurship and recent self-employment trends in the United States

This chapter provides information on some recent trends in entrepreneurship in the United States, focusing, in particular, on the self-employment performance of Latinas (women of Hispanic background, both foreign- and US-born). Latinos represent the largest and fastest growing minority group in the US, and a group with low labour market outcomes. This chapter investigates whether self-employment should be considered a policy tool to broaden the labour market alternatives of Latinas.  Self-employment has grown substantially in the United States over the last three decades. Women and immigrants have played an important role in this growth. Latina business owners, who are mostly immigrants, represent an important group among these entrepreneurs. The average performance of self-employed Latinas appears favourable when compared to that of white female counterparts. However, Latinas in salaried employment have higher earnings than Latina business owners. In light of those findings, the determinants of self-employment decision for Latinas in the US are analysed.


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