Thursday, January 29, 2009

Remittances Drop Worldwide

For the first since records were kept, remittances from immigrants in the U.S. had dropped -- 3.6% -- to families back home in Mexico. This is not unique. Remittances are dropping around the world -- in Eastern Europe as much as 40%. The significance of the decline is not so much as an indicator of reduce migration or of the impact of the recession on migrants. Poorer, developing countries had come to depend on the growth of remittances for economic development, rivaling foreign investment. They have been an effective poverty-reduction tool. Remittances have allowed for the education of children, building homes, purchasing another field, municipal improvements. As the global recession stems economic growth, remittances are turned more to survival than to development. (See LA Times article.)

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