On the other side of the transaction, poorer citizens of developing countries are seeking opportunities to make some money, and selling their organs on the black market quickly becomes a viable option. Unfortunately, many of these sellers are from nations that have yet to make their “paradigm shift”—that is, the government lacks the resources to support robust research and drug development programs, and the treatments used so commonly in wealthy nations have yet to “trickle down” as some politicians claim will happen as a natural consequence—so there are fewer sellers with healthy, uninfected organs for sale than there are buyers in need of transplant. Thus, supply remains roughly constant.
A third side effect of the great escape is the discrepancy between who benefits from and is harmed by organ trafficking, directly and indirectly. Arguably, wealthy international recipients benefit most from participating in the black market, since conversion rates make them more valuable customers for poor sellers from developing countries. The recipients can purchase an organ from some of these places for a much lower price than they would be able to find in their own country—fellow rich citizens have no reason to sell their organs (Nasir 2013), and sellers receive more money from wealthy international buyers than they would from locals using the same currency. Although this exchange superficially appears to be a win-win for both parties, the locals in need of organs are out of luck. They cannot compete with the international offers, and the chances of finding a donor anywhere are slim. Globalization has no doubt contributed to this dynamic, as the world has become increasingly interconnected, and transactions occur too often and too quickly to count.
This brings the conversation to some of the most controversial, widely discussed problems faced by those even tangentially involved