Highlights

1. We need to rethink the migration system. Emerging flows, increasing return migration, and new places of origin and destination are reshaping the regional migratory dynamic.

2. Demographic indicators are converging in the region. Declining fertility and population growth anticipate that South to North migration will not reach the historical peaks.

3. Differences in age structure result in distinctive migration dynamics. The rapid aging process within the region, particularly in North America, will drive the need for care work and other services, creating incentives for certain types of migration.

4. There is a mismatch between migration dynamics and policy responses. Current immigration policies are not in line with traditional and emerging patterns in the three main destinations, Canada, US, and Mexico, regarding management, control, and integration.

5. The current population dynamics of this migration system offer a unique opportunity to manage migration efficiently. Migration within the region will influence how the six countries fare economically, politically and socially. To capitalize the potential benefits of migration, we need a strategy that incorporates an approach based on shared responsibilities. 

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Suggested citation

Giorguli-Saucedo, S. E., García-Guerrero, V. M., & Masferrer, C. (2016). A migration system in the making: Demographic dynamics and migration policies in North America and the Northern Triangle of Central-America. (Policy Paper). Center for Demographic, Urban and Environmental Studies, El Colegio de México. Retrieved from http://cedua.colmex.mx/images/_micrositios/amsitm/Giorguli_Garcia_Masferrer_2016.pdf