President Arévalo believes in temporary visas and investment to reduce irregular migration

The purpose of visas must be meaningful so that people can have a safe and circular migration.

by Astrid Luna

Guatemala City, by Brenda Larios -AGN- During his participation in the Session: A Rocky Route: Managing Global Migrant and Refugee Flows, President Bernardo Arévalo emphasized that it is important to generate employment and work visas to reduce irregular migration in the country.

Regarding the actions his government will be taking this year on the immigration issue, the president stated, “For us, it would be in two directions: channeling more investment into the parts of the country that are expelling populations because of the lack of opportunities, and expanding the legal working visas and programs that we have with the United States and Canada.”

These visas will be a true sign that circular and safe migration exists. It can also solve the current lack of employment and protect people from the dangers of irregular migration.

Boosting the economy

The president indicated that he will expand on the recommendation for using temporary visas. Likewise, he will seek support of this kind beyond Canada and the United States.

He said, “The problem will not be addressed until we are developing those regions in the country that are the ones that are expelling people, regions that have been abandoned out of discrimination, out of abandonment by the state.”

The president described how the lack of employment is repeated in many nations; Mexico had a shortage of jobs for 1.6 million workers last year.

“The economies in Uruguay, Panama, and Costa Rica all had labor shortages, so this suggests that we are doing a poor job of connecting people with opportunities and that we need to think more comprehensively about how to get people to work.” The president said. 

Government investment 

President Arévalo emphasized that a great effort is being made to bring investment to various corners of the country, generate economic conditions, and avoid irregular migration.

According to President Arévalo, “We are making a huge effort to bring state investment into development infrastructure, not only roads, waterworks, electrification, and so on.”

This will be worked with stakeholders, cooperating partners, and the different sectors to try to find solutions to boost the country’s economy.

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