Washington, Dec 8: The global economic crisis will cause a sharp drop next year in worker remittances- a major source of income for developing countries like India, Bangladesh, Mexico and Philippines, labour specialists have said.
Ryszard Cholewinski, a labour specialist at the International Organization for Migration (IOM), said the fall will heavily affect countries including Mexico, India, Bangladesh and the Philippines.
The flow of remittances to developing nations - currently about 283 billion dollar could decline by up to 9 percent because of the global slowdown; The Washington Times quoted him, as saying.
India was the top recipient of remittances last year, amounting to 27 billion dollar, or about 3 percent of its gross domestic product.
Remittances received by China reached 25.7 billion dollar; the Philippines, 17.2 billion dollar; and Bangladesh, 6.6 billion dollar; according to the IOM's "World Migration 2008" report.
Mexico got 25.7 billion dollar in 2007, it said.
The gloomy economic outlook could dry up jobs in sectors that rely on migrant workers, such as construction (especially in oil-rich Persian Gulf nations), manufacturing, hospitality and tourism.
Health care and household domestic care are less likely to be affected, Cholewinski said.
About 10 percent to 15 percent of the more than 200 million migrants in the world today are categorized as irregular, Cholewinski said, adding that the majority enter a country legally and overstay.
The IOM said the downturn is likely to last through 2009 but turn around in 2010, assuming the global economy recovers.