Migrant workers here sent €516m back home in 2010
More than €500m was sent last year by migrant workers based in Ireland to their home countries, according to new data from the European Union's statistics office.
The bulk of the money, €416m, was sent from Ireland to other EU countries. While no specific breakdown of those countries was provided, they're certain to include those which have a strong migrant representation in Ireland, such as Latvia, Lithuania and Romania.
A further €100m was sent from Ireland to home countries outside the EU.
But the figures published by Eurostat yesterday are at a significant variance to data published last year by the World Bank.
The latter estimated that about $1.75bn (€1.3bn) would be sent home in 2010 by migrants in Ireland to their home countries. The World Bank also reckoned that just under $2bn (€1.5bn) had left the country in 2009. The outflow figure for Ireland had reached a peak of nearly $2.8bn (€2.1bn) in 2008, according to the World Bank.
The survey published by Eurostat yesterday maintains that €31bn was sent by migrant workers in the EU to their home countries last year.
Just under €9bn of that was transferred from one EU country to another, while €22.3bn of it left the trading bloc. The total figure is up 3pc on 2009. No data was provided by Eurostat for the United Kingdom.
However, the World Bank last year estimated that $3.5bn (€2.6bn) would be sent home by UK-based migrants in 2010.
According to Eurostat, the EU country with the biggest level of remittance activity in 2010 was Spain. Eurostat maintains that almost €7.2bn was transferred from there by migrant workers, while the World Bank estimates it to have been $12.2bn (€9.2bn).
The country with the next largest figure last year was Italy, which saw €6.57bn leave its shores. Just over €1.2bn of that stayed within the EU and €5.3bn was destined for other countries. The World Bank estimated the figure for Italy in 2010 to be $12.2bn (€9.2bn).
Latvia was the only EU country with no recorded migrant financial outflows last year.