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Remittances – A Bridge between Migration and Development?

Remittances – A Bridge between Migration and Development?

Remittance refers to the portion of migrant income that, in the form of either funds or goods, flows back into the country of origin, primarily to support families back home. The greater share of these largely monetary flows benefits developing countries. The goal of this policy brief is the critical examination of remittances as a link between the migration and development debates. It begins with an account of the procedures and motives for such transfers as well as an overview of current trends and figures. It then addresses the importance of remittances with respect to poverty reduction, income distribution, spending habits, education, health, investment and growth as well as the national balance of payments in developing countries. Finally, the conclusion addresses the question of whether migration and the resulting flow of funds could evolve into a springboard for development in these countries. (Published 9/2006)