Migrants in Belgium send from two to five billion euros each year to families and friends in their country of origin, according to research by 11.11.11 and the KU Leuven (Catholic University). Often they are not aware that they pay overly high transfer costs.
Many migrants regulary send family or close ones in their country of origin money. The so-called “remittances” rise to huge amounts worldwide: more than 400 billion euros a year. That’s three times the amount of rich countries spending on development aid.
The National Bank estimates that about 508 million euros are sent from Belgium to their country of origin. But in reality this amount is even higher, according to the research of 11.11.11 in cooperation with the Research Institute for Labor and Society at the KU Leuven: from one to to five billion euros. The research also shows that high transfer costs are often charged, especially if relatively small amounts are transferred. Depending on the target country, they may increase to more than 15%.