Seminar: Remittances transfers to Latin America and the Caribbean, Issues and perspectives on development
July 22, 2004, Washington D.C.

On July 22, 2004, at the Organization of  American States in Washington, DC, the Summits of the Americas Secretariat held a seminar, “Remittances in Latin America and the Caribbean:  Issues and Perspectives on Development”, in the context of monitoring Summit implementation.   

At the Special Summit of the Americas in Monterrey, México held on January 12-13, 2004, Heads of State and Government signed the Declaration of Nuevo Leon, in which they made the commitment to work together to eliminate regulatory obstacles that affect the cost of these transfers and to reduce their average costs by at least half by 2008. 

In this context, the Summits of the Americas Secretariat of the OAS contracted a paper on the issue from Georgetown University specialist Manuel Orozco.  Issues addressed at the seminar included: an analysis of  the present remittances market; the growing demand for transfer services; social, cultural and economic consequences of remittance flows; consumer education for the users of transfer services; options for regulation and incentives to encourage lower costs and more accessible services for low income customers;  and examination of specific country cases.  Overall, the discussion reflected the leaders’ goal of linking remittances to successful development.  

The discussion panel included: Carla Decker, CEO District Government Employees Federal Credit Union; Ernesto Armenteros, President Grupo Quisqueyana / Cashpin, in Dominican Republic; Héctor David Córdova Arteaga, Manager FEDECACES, El Salvador and Maria Otero, President Acción International. Ambassador Abigaíl Castro de Pérez, Permanent Representative of Salvador to the OAS closed the panel which was moderated by Dr. Irene Klinger, Executive Secretary, Summits of the Americas Secretariat.  

More than seventy participants attended this event which included representatives from financial institutions such as banks, financial associations, embassies, civil society organizations and academics, Drawn from the local community as well as from New York City, Atlanta, Miami, Newark.

Comments by Daniel I. Ayala, Senior Vice President, Well Fargo BankCross Border Payments Manager
Presentation by Ambassador Abigail Castro De Pérez, Permanent Mission of El Salvador to the OAS

Here some pictures from the event:

Irene Klinger, Executive Secretary Summits of the Americas Secretariat

Manuel Orozco, Senior Researcher, Georgetown University

Carla Decker, President/CEO District Government Employees Credit Union and Ernesto Armenteros, CEO, Quisqueyana, Inc., Dominican Republic

The Panel: Irene Klinger, Carla Decker and Ernesto Armenteros

Héctor David Córdova Arteaga , Manager, FEDECACES, El Salvador and Maria Otero, President, Accion International

Ambassador Abigaíl Castro de Pérez, Permanent Mission of El Salvador to the OAS

Elizabeth McQuerry Federal Reserve Retail Payments Office


The Seminar