Blogging from the Highlands of Scotland until I return to the Murcia region of Spain towards the end of January 2018 for about a month
'From fanaticism to barbarism is only one step' - Diderot

Thursday, 18 March 2004

Individualism is certainly best

At last the importance of individual remittances home by 'guest-workers' to their families in their countries of origin has been recognised as being much more significant, and probably a great deal more productive, than channeling all aid to developing countries through governemnt-to-government transfers. From my own experience in the Middle East, in particular, I know that hundreds of Bangladeshis, Indians, Pakistanis and Phillipinos came into our offices every month to send a very significant proportion of their earnings back home to support their families. Probably even more important were those thousands who did not come to our or similar offices, but instead sent their money back by less orthodox methods (in a western sense) - probably cheaper and probably reasonably secure methods, too.

Why more productive? Because it keeps this money out of the hands of potentially corrupt officials in the receiving countries, quite apart from by-passing some of the more wasteful international bureaucracies which have developed to channel official aid to recipient countries.

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