Saturday, January 24, 2009

One Million Nicaraguans emigrate to Costa Rica

Trying to escape poverty and a lack of jods in Nicaragua, over a million people have emigrated to Costa Rica to find a job. The numbers are according to the International Organization for Migration. Around 250,000 people from Nicaragua now live in Costa Rica permanently. Many return to their home country after their temporary job ends.

We found the story on the emigration from the Costa Rica's Daily News

With a population of 5.6 million inhabitants - more than half of them under 18 - with an annual growth of 2.7 percent, Nicaragua, the second-poorest country in the Americas, "is facing a tremendous challenge to overcome its poverty," IOM spokesman Jean-Philippe Chauzy said Friday in Geneva.

That challenge, he said, particularly affects women, since a quarter of Nicaraguan households are headed by women.

The spokesman cited Capt. Lenin Flores, head of a busy post on the Nicaragua-Costa Rica border, who said that the Nicaraguan emigrants "are not criminals," but people "risking everything to find work and a better life," even though they do it without the required documents.

Chauzy also pointed to the case of 18-year-old Juanita, who traveled a long, hard road to cross the border illegally with her husband and children, and said that "wages are low and we have two kids, we just can't manage that way."

In the last 30 years, Nicaraguan emigration has been spurred by natural disasters, political conflicts and economic hardship.

Costa Rica, meanwhile, has become a magnet for people without professional qualifications thanks to the abundant job market in sectors less attractive to the native population - above all in agriculture, construction and domestic service.

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