Latin Americans send home EUR3.7bn to families

6th June 2007, Comments 0 comments

6 June 2007, MADRID- Latin American immigrants working in Spain sent home to their countries of origin EUR 3.73 billion at the current exchange rate) in remittances last year, helping support some 8 million dependents on the other side of the Atlantic.

6 June 2007

MADRID- Latin American immigrants working in Spain sent home to their countries of origin EUR 3.73 billion at the current exchange rate) in remittances last year, helping support some 8 million dependents on the other side of the Atlantic.

This is one of the main conclusions of the first report on the sending of remittances between Spain and Latin America, a study prepared by the Bendixen and Associates for a unit of the Inter-American Development Bank and presented Wednesday in Madrid.

According to consultant Sergio Bendixen and the IDB's Donald F. Terry, if the trend continues, remittances sent to Latin America from Spain will amount to 5 billion euros (some $6.7 billion) in 2010.

According to the figures, currently 1.82 million adult Latin American immigrants live in Spain, a population that makes up 7 percent of that country's labor force and a group that has tripled in size in the past five years.

Remittances constitute the main engine of growth for the Latin American economy, exceeding foreign direct investment in some countries, and a large portion of those cash transfers are used not only for day-to-day survival, as has been the case for years, but also to pay mortgages, start small businesses and open savings accounts that allow the accountholders to get access to credit.

The Latin American immigrants contribute not only to the economic development of their respective countries, but also to that of Spain, given that - according to the study - of the 30 billion euros ($40.6 billion) earned annually by Latin American workers, about 90 percent remains in their residence communities.

Most of the immigrants work in such jobs as domestic workers, in the hotel business and in construction, and they send home to their countries of origin approximately 15 percent of what they earn each year, the study found.

Bendixen said that in all the years he has been analyzing these population groups, he has never seen such a happy and well-integrated group as the Latin Americans in Spain - "better than in any other country in the world" - perhaps because Spaniards know quite well what it means to seek one's livelihood in another country, he noted.

The study was put together from 1,100 interviews conducted last April among Latin American immigrants mainly from Ecuador, Colombia, Argentina, the Dominican Republic, Peru, Bolivia and Paraguay. EFE

[Copyright EFE with Expatica]

Subject: Spanish news

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