Remittances larger than official aid

Not that I\’m surprised or anything but this is an interesting point:

But now, the flow of migrant money around the world has shot up to record levels as more people than ever cross borders to live and work abroad. It\’s known as remittance money, and in 2012 it topped $530bn (£335bn), according to the latest World Bank figures.

The amount has tripled in a decade and is now more than three times larger than total global aid budgets, sparking serious debate as to whether migration and the money it generates is a realistic alternative to just doling out aid.

After all, it\’s not just larger than aid it\’s almost certainly more effective than aid as well.

24 comments on “Remittances larger than official aid

  1. The beauty of remittances is that they actually go to poor people.

    Aid? Its a transfer of money from poor people in rich countries to rich people in poor countries (Peter Bauer)

  2. @Serf // Jan 31, 2013 at 9:49 am

    The beauty of remittances is that they actually go to poor people.”
    No they don’t. They go to the migrant’s family who might not be that poor for their country or even in lifestyle for the typical person in the UK.

    Also if an immigrant lives in a subsidised house
    then the UK tax payer is indirectly paying for the remittance.

    BTW I am married to a migrant and I know cases of all the above.

  3. Remittances are pretty excellent. In some countries they rather distort the political system, but it’s a price worth paying.

    It’s why open borders are aces: when borders are open, people work hard overseas to acquire skills and capital and then go home; when borders are closed, they solely migrate to the first country with no intention of ever leaving.

    I’m impressed that literally in the second comment we get a bigot who thinks remittances are shithouse and lies that they are paid for by the fucking taxman. Wow.

  4. “I’m impressed that literally in the second comment we get a bigot who thinks remittances are shithouse and lies that they are paid for by the fucking taxman. Wow.”
    English isn’t your first language is it?

    “Also if an immigrant lives in a subsidised house
    then the UK tax payer is indirectly paying for the remittance.”
    I said if. I realise that for the pro immigration bigots. I should have said not all immigrants live in subsidised housing – but it is hard to wonder what the stupid are going to think.

    Obviously if someone is receiving benefits in the UK and they send money home to e.g. Colombia (and I know someone who did this – I am not bigotted. A bigot is someone who any cares about their own opinions. My opinions change with the facts. The fact that I saw this happen changed my views from being similar to John B’s to being more realistic) then the tax payer is paying for it.
    I don’t know if John B’ has never met any immigrants on benefits or is just a bigot.
    However this seems true of him

    “The mind of a bigot is like the pupil of the eye; the more light you pour upon it, the more it will contract.”

    I didn’t say that
    ” remittances are shithous”
    either.
    I just said the truth. They don’t always go to the poor in another country.
    That I would have thought was obvious.
    People send money to relatives and friends who are not always the poor in another country. Why did some moron understand
    ” remittances are shithouse”?

  5. @”Serf // Jan 31, 2013 at 9:49 am

    Aid? Its a transfer of money from poor people in rich countries to rich people in poor countries (Peter Bauer)

    Sometimes aid has done a great deal of good.
    Anyone who has seen the benefits of plan Colombia in Colombia will know that.
    Far more useful than all the remittances being sent there, even if it is less money.

  6. I once worked for a few weeks in a country emerging from years under a marxist dictatorship imposed by the “liberation movement” which was a cover for Brezhnev’s stooges*. I was told, seriously, by a senior civil servant that their major export was people – remittances from citizens working abroad exceeded the total income from “visible” exports!
    David is way off beam. The ones who go emigrate to earn some money *and send it back* are not the relatively rich: how many of Mayer Rothschild’s children felt a need to fund their father’s bread and soup in his dotage?
    * No, not Ulster in an alternative reality: a former colony of a continental country which was charmingly non racist since, as far as I could tell, 100% of citizens were neither black nor white.

  7. Re: #4 john b:
    “..when borders are open, people work hard overseas to acquire skills and capital and then go home; when borders are closed, they solely migrate to the first country with no intention of ever leaving.”
    I assume you are not thinking of, e.g., Brit expats who, by and largely, are not acquiring skills but more of unskilled and/or tradesmen? Do you have any data or studies that show that many such “go home”? That doesn’t seem to square with USA/Canadian experiance. What/which borders are you considering closed? Their native border or the “first country”, or?

  8. “David is way off beam. The ones who go emigrate to earn some money *and send it back* are not the relatively rich: how many of Mayer Rothschild’s children felt a need to fund their father’s bread and soup in his dotage?”
    I didn’t say that. I said
    “They go to the migrant’s family who might not be that poor for their country or even in lifestyle for the typical person in the UK.”
    It is true in our case and other cases I know.
    I didn’t say ALL migrants are relatively rich nor did I imply it. I said they might be.

    BTW it costs £800 to travel from Cali, Colombia to the UK as some people in Barrio Muncipal, Cali earn £6 per day so the poorest would have problems travelling to the UK.

    These are people I met last was there.
    They are not figments of my imagination.

  9. “It’s why open borders are aces: when borders are open, people work hard overseas to acquire skills and capital and then go home; when borders are closed, they solely migrate to the first country with no intention of ever leaving.”
    Not true. Because although the borders are closed immigrants to the UK can get British citizenship
    and then go back home. Or go to another EU country or in some cases find it easier to go to Australia. (I know 3 immigrants 2 South Africans and one Brazilian who have done this).

    Have you ever met any migrants?

  10. ““They go to the migrant’s family who might not be that poor for their country or even in lifestyle for the typical person in the UK.”
    The typical person in the UK is stinking rich compared to the middle class in many countries. I was talking about a country whose GDP/head has risen to a little over £2k (£2.5k at purchasing power parity), less than one-tenth of that in the UK (or just over one-tenth at PPP). Even at PPP, the feckless unemployed tenant in the UK is better off than a hard-working farmer, mechanic, shopkeeper, accountant, even plumber out there.
    I was referring to emigrants who felt they had duty to send remittances. David is trying to claim that I was describing emigrants from families whose income was *more than ten times* the national average. I may have been exaggerating when instancing Mayer Rothschild but not by as much as David.

  11. @ David #10
    I’ve met a lot of migrants, starting when I was 6 with a Polish RAF pilot who helped save the UK from being invaded by the Nazis after Chamberlain was unable to fulfill his promise to Poland.
    Crawl back under your stone

  12. Sometimes aid has done a great deal of good.
    Anyone who has seen the benefits of plan Colombia in Colombia will know that.

    Legalising cocaine would have done far more than any aid programme to help that country.

  13. @”Legalising cocaine would have done far more than any aid programme to help that country.”
    That is true.
    @john77
    You are the most stupid person I have ever spoken to. What can you possibly object to in what I said?
    It was not anti immigrant in any way.
    (I am not anti immigrants btw – I don’t want to give new migrants to the UK money – but I don’t want to give anyone money)

  14. “““They go to the migrant’s family who might not be that poor for their country or even in lifestyle for the typical person in the UK.””
    I don’t want to be unkind but is your first language English? In English the word “might” does not mean “all”.
    Or are you prematurely senile?

    The middle class in some third world countries do have a lifestyle superior to the UK in some ways. Until recently the vast majority of the middle class in many Latin American countries employed a maid. That is a superior lifestyle
    in some ways.
    If you don’t believe me look it up on the net or go to Sao Paulo or Cali or Bogota.

  15. Why did people ignore facts?
    In some countries it is very difficult for the very poorest to emigrate because they live a long way from the Capital. For example in Colombia the poorest live in Choco – it is an expensive journey for someone living in the remote coast to travel to Bogota to get a British visa.

  16. @ David
    For someone who discusses the question of remittances to poor countries solely in the context of immigrants into the UK to call someone else stupid is breathtaking. Let alone someone who questions whether a former ex-pat worker has ever met a migrant. What is an ex-pat?
    Remittances from the USA are certainly much larger than those from the UK and those from France,Germany and Italy are comparable; many countries outside Europe and North America employ migrants , for example, most domestic servants in the Gulf states are supporting, in whole or in part, a family back home and before the Anti-Apartheid movement generated a slump in South Africa virtually all the labour in its gold mines were migrants from Mozambique, Lesotho, Angola etc.
    Since when was a British Visa the only way to get out of a country?
    There are certainly a few UK immigrants living in subsidised housing but, despite the impression your remarks give, whether deliberately or through incompetence, they form a smaller percentage of the tenants of subsidised housing than they do of the population as a whole. So, in real life, UK immigrants in aggregate subsidise long-term UK residents living in social housing.
    Why do *you* ignore facts?

  17. @john77 // Feb 1, 2013 at 10:13 pm

    @ David
    “For someone …. stupid is breathtaking. ”
    I called you stupid because you believed that I had said “all” when I said “might”.
    You also seem to believe that I don’t like migrants. Which shows an inablity to read as I did say that I am married to
    a migrant. Perhaps you are not married or you don’t like your wife but I love mine and I am so happy that she came here.

    However it was wrong to call someone who is senile stupid. Your aggresion and lack of understanding shows that you are going senile. I feel sorry for you. I hope that I will not be that aggresivive when I am in my seventies.
    @John

    Let alone someone who questions whether a former ex-pat worker has ever met a migrant. What is an ex-pat?

    As you don’t believe anything I say, why should I believe you really are an ex-pat? Also do you remember that far back?
    “Remittances from the USA are certainly much larger than those from the UK …

    This is not really contradicting anything I say.
    @Since when was a British Visa the only way to get out of a country?
    I said passport – you really are going senile. Don’t you know the difference?
    I said that our borders are not closed once you live here a few years – why did that offend you? Is it a side effect of your age?

    “There are certainly a few UK immigrants living in subsidised housing but, despite the impression your remarks give,
    whether deliberately or through incompetence, they form a smaller percentage of the tenants of subsidised housing
    than they do of the population as a whole. So, in real life, UK immigrants in aggregate
    subsidise long-term UK residents living in social housing.”
    Got a link? I don’t think anyone has studied the percentage of immigrants who live in subsidised housing (council housing plus housing benefit).
    If you look at
    http://fullfact.org/factchecks/migration_social_council_housing_foreign_nationals-18654
    There are some serious flaws with the data
    1) It ignore immigrants who have got British passports.
    2) It ignores immigrants who live in private housing that is paid for by the tax payer.
    For example
    I know a bogus Colombian refugee who has never paid a proper rent in 16 years in this country. However she would not appear on these figures because she
    was living in a privately rented house (paid for by us), then she got a British passport and then she got a council house. However she is still
    an immigrant. Why do you believe obviously flawed statistics? I guess you believe Tony about Iraq as well.

    A proper study would show that in area y, people of age x what percentage of people who were not born with a British passport pay private rent or a mortage
    out of their own pocket and which don’t and how does that compare with people born with a British passport.
    Then we would know if what you said is true. Don’t you agree that someone living in a privately rented house which is paid for by the tax payer is not subsidising
    council housing?
    @John
    “Why do *you* ignore facts?”
    I don’t I said might – I didn’t say all. I don’t know what percentage of remittances go to people who are in desperate need or are relatively well
    off. I don’t think anyone does. I do know that for some countries e.g. Colombia the poorest people find it very hard to emmigrate.
    I will give examples if you apologise for this stupid remark
    @John
    “Crawl back under your stone”
    Of course I forgive you as I imagine that old age and senility must be difficult.

  18. @ David
    Does your wonderful memory extend as far as remembering what you wrote yesterday?
    ” it is an expensive journey for someone living in the remote coast to travel to Bogota to get a British visa.”
    You accuse me of being senile because I referred to your immediate previous post. You call me stupid because you assume with no evidence that I believed something, while I made the point that not all migrants are poor, you have persistently implied that migrants are far from the poorest in their native country despite massive numbers of documented examples.
    Your comment “Also if an immigrant lives in a subsidised house then the UK tax payer is indirectly paying for the remittance.” is prima facie evidence that you are discussing remittances solely in terms of immigrants into the UK. FYI housing was subsidised in Russia when I was, briefly, working there so my firm was able to rent a flat for me for three months from someone who had retained the tenancy while working and living somewhere else, but you did not say “the UK or US or Russian or French or… taxpayer” So ““Remittances from the USA are certainly much larger than those from the UK” IS contradicting something you say. Of course it would be deemed aggressive if I queried why someone of your allegedly superior intellect failed to recognise that fact.
    You link to a “fact-check” which shows that in a two of London boroughs out of 32 immigrants form a large minority of council/social tenants, but in none of the other are they recorded as more than 20%, with substantial margins of doubt in only four cases. The vast majority are UK nationals. However 37% of those living in London were born outside the UK. Look at http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-20677515.
    I don’t need to provide a link if your best link supports my comment.
    Housing benefit subsidises the tenant, not the house and I do not know of any records of the immigrant /non-immigrant status of recipients *but* the data on households receiving it in different localities can be correlated with the the local %age of immigrants to show that immigrants are a lower % of those receiving housing benefit and/or council housing than non-immigrants. If your personal universe only covers Tower Hamlets, the City and Westminster, then you might imagine something else but a disproportionate amount of council housing is in the old mining and industrial areas.
    “I said that our borders are not closed once you live here a few years – why did that offend you? Is it a side effect of your age?” Obviously my great age – I sometimes compete in a league limited to men over forty and women over 35 – contributes to my failure to understand this question since I have never given any indication of being offended by this statement. Presumably David is continuing his 100% failure rate for mind-reading.
    “As you don’t believe anything I say, why should I believe you really are an ex-pat? Also do you remember that far back?”
    Firstly, I have accepted those statements of your statements that I have no reason to disbelieve; secondly, because *I* tell the truth and have a reputation for so doing, even to extent of apologising if I find I have made a mistake. I do remember a lot further back
    than that – my description does not fit San Marino , so it obviously refers to something in the last 25 years.
    I have not made any comment about your wife but if you were wise, you would have stated early on that you love your wife because your posts have implied that you think immigrants are scrounging off UK taxpayers, whereas ONS data indicates that immigrants contribute more in tax than they take out of the system. For avoidance of doubt, I do love my wife and also get on very well my in-laws and in-laws squared.
    My mother-in-law is over seventy – she is less aggressive than you, but might regard “off-beam” as a tolerable comment, so that gives no guidance as to your future.
    “Why do *you* ignore facts?”
    I don’t I said might – I didn’t say all. I don’t know what percentage of remittances go to people who are in desperate need or are relatively well”
    That is, in itself, an admission that you ignore facts.

  19. @John
    “you would have stated early on that you love your wife because your posts have implied that you think immigrants are scrounging off UK taxpayers, whereas ONS data indicates that immigrants contribute more in tax than they take out of the system”
    I thought that you weren’t married – fyi most people love their wife.
    They only imply that to the paranoid.
    Some immigrants scrounge – some don’t.
    Why don’t you put a link to the ONS figures?
    However There are some reports that question their figures.
    http://www.migrationwatchuk.org/briefingPaper/document/235
    Do you believe all Goverenment reports? Did you believe Tony about Iraq?
    Personally I think immigration could benefit a lot the UK under a points system like in Australia. However I don’t have time to expand on this
    @John
    “The vast majority are UK nationals. However 37% of those living in London were born outside the UK. Look at http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-20677515.”
    Don’t you know that a UK national and some born in the UK are not the same thing?
    Please read your own link before posting 24% of people in London are foreign nationals not 37%. Therefore the fact that in some of the more desirable London boroughs 47% of lets go to foreign nationals seems quite a lot.”

  20. ” you have persistently implied that migrants are far from the poorest in their native country despite massive numbers of documented examples.”
    To go back to my original post. I said might.
    I then posted
    “In some countries it is very difficult for the very poorest to emigrate because they live a long way from the Capital. For example in Colombia
    the poorest live in Choco – it is an expensive journey for someone living in the remote coast to travel to Bogota to get a British visa.”
    There seems no point in asking why you believe that “some” means “all”.
    @John
    “I don’t I said might – I didn’t say all. I don’t know what percentage of remittances go to people who are in desperate need or are relatively well”
    That is, in itself, an admission that you ignore facts.”
    My point was that we don’t know how effective remittances are. It was not an attack on immigrants or anything like that.

    “Obviously my great age – I sometimes compete in a league limited to men over forty and women over 35 – contributes to my failure to understand this question since I have never given any indication of being offended by this statement”
    If you weren’t offended why did you say
    “Crawl back under your stone”?

  21. I am not going to bother responding to any more posts on this.
    Some people think might means all.
    There is no way you can communicate with people like that. If you are polite they are rude and if you are rude back they accuse you of being aggresive.

  22. “If you are polite they are rude and if you are rude back they accuse you of being aggresive.”
    Skipping over David’s spelling error, it is he has accused me of being aggressive even before I was rude back, if I was (which is a matter of opinion – I thought I was being more civil than he deserved . David seems to think that calling me Stupid and Senile is polite: I shall leave that to everyone else to judge.
    He has denied “implied” by quoting a phrase that implies – after calling *me* stupid.
    If David’s point was that “we don’t know how effective remittances are” then why did he say “Far more useful than all the remittances being sent there, even if it is less money.”
    It is just possible that Government Aid is more beneficial than remittances in the relatively small Chaco region of Colombia, but it is not possible that is so in any of the half-dozen or so countries where I have worked as a temporary migrant.

  23. It is typical of propagandists with no solid facts to support their slanders that they sling out so many false claims that we miss out some in our refutations.
    Anyone who is able to read will note that I asked David to crawl back under his stone before he falsely implied I was over seventy so cannot have said because he was being offensive by his false allegations about my age.
    #22 amounts to an admission that we have proved him wrong and he has run out of arguments.

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