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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2965

Migration opportunities can reduce poverty, WB study says

M.A Qader-Reporting from Bangladesh

Dhaka, 30 July ( Creating migration opportunities for the very poor could accelerate the pace of poverty reduction, a World Bank study said.

Revealing a World Bank study on 'Remittances in Bangladesh: Determinants and Outlook FY 10', WB senior economist Zahid Hussain at a press briefing on Wednesday in Dhaka emphasized on the need of micro-financing agencies to be involved in the migration process.

"The micro-financers' scheme are very small in monetary terms which yields low productivity and it's not improving their [the poor] situation."

Migration involves high costs but also has high annual returns in terms of remittances accounting 1.5 to 2.5 times of the GDP, he said.

He added that financing migration cost would benefit the agencies and help reduce poverty.

The study says that 28 percent of the migrants use own cash resources to go abroad.

Those who seek help from friends and relatives are 21 percent while 10 percent borrow from them, 15 percent mortgage lands while 12 percent sell assets to finance migration expenses, according to the WB report.

The WB sees annual increase of number of migrants, international oil prices, GDP growth and exchange rate as the determinants of remittance growth in Bangladesh.

The study finds that an additional migrant worker brings in $ 816 in remittance annually.

He also emphasized creating dedicated institutions dealing with migrant issues.

"We see a strong necessity for proper authorities to monitor recruitment, job contracts and to prevent malpractices."

The WB senior economist stressed the need for skills development for international labor market, especially for female workers and growth sectors along with developing language skills.

-Asian Tribune-

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