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The exiles that you do not see on the news

January 5, 2018

 

Chile is probably the steadiest country in South America. The economy works well, unemployment rate is low and inflation is around 3-4% per year. This is the reason why the country has been attractive for many migrants in the recent years.

Usually, we see on the news how lots of migrants leave their countries in Africa or Middle East running away from war, discrimination or economic crisis. But, what about Latin America? Everyone is now aware that there is a huge increase of the immigrants here. Looking at Chilean national statistics, we find that in the last two years the number of visa requests has increased 32% between 2014 & 2016. But, if we split this figure among people that came to the country with a job contract and those who came only with temporary visas, the figure decreases 93% in the first option and goes up to 145% in the second. This means that most of the immigrants are coming here without a job. They are probably “economic exiles” looking for a better future. Moreover, if we examine the origin of some immigrants, we will find the clue. The rate of people coming from Venezuela between 2014-2016 has soared 649% and from Haiti 522%. This is something that you can observe just by going to the Central Market La Vega or hearing the different Spanish accents any Sunday in downtown Santiago.

Probably you do not see these kinds of exiles on the global news, however, they are still here.

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