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IDB fund to brief press on findings of first survey of remittances to Haiti

The Inter-American Development Bank’s Multilateral Investment Fund (MIF) will hold a briefing for the Haitian press on Monday, March 5 in Port-au-Prince to present the findings of the first survey among people who receive remittances in Haiti.

MIF Manager Donald F. Terry, IDB Representative Anna Cecilia McInnis and pollster Sergio Bendixen will speak at the briefing, which is scheduled to take place at 3 p.m. at the Karibe convention center (salon Pré-Function).

In recent years migrant remittances – money transfers made by foreign workers to their homelands – have become a key source of income for developing countries around the world. In the case of Haiti, which has a large diaspora in the United States, Canada, France and the Dominican Republic, these flows are roughly equivalent of one-third of gross national product.

At the press briefing Terry and Bendixen will present an estimate for the total amount of remittances received in Haiti during 2006. They will also discuss the results of the survey conducted among Haitians who receive remittances from relatives residing abroad. The inquiry looked at issues such as the cost of money transfers, household income levels, spending priorities and patterns, and participation in the formal financial system.

The press briefing will be held on the eve of a conference on remittances to Haiti, which will bring together government officials, bankers, money transfer operators, diaspora leaders, NGOs and academics. The Tuesday, March 6 conference, which will take place at the same convention center, will be open to the media.

The MIF, an autonomous fund administered by the IDB, promotes private sector development in Latin America and the Caribbean, with an emphasis on microenterprise and small business. It has been studying remittances since the year 2000 to gauge their economic impact and to seek ways to reduce their costs and boost their development potential in the region.


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