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I have a few concerns about this point of view: 1. I think comparing remittances with the fiscal cost of brain drain is the wrong calculation. We should be looking at the long-term change in living standards in the home country that depends on the presence or non-presence of a skilled worker. This doesn't just take into account the worker's own production but also that of the future generations who, as a result of the skilled worker's emigration, will not live in the home country. 2. Rich countries are becoming better at cherry-picking the "best" potential migrants. The highly skilled migrant programs in Australia and the United Kingdom, for example, are greatly increasing the incentive for brain drain to occur without doing anything to address its costs. 3. I think the externalities associated with the presence of highly skilled individuals in their home countries can be quite big. It's not just a question of sharing knowledge and other typical spillovers. These are also the people who can help to form the professional middle class that serves as the anchor for economic and social development. Without them, it will be hard for poor countries to solve their own problems; they'll continue to depend on technical assistance from organizations like the World Bank.