Immigration in Guatemala has more than doubled since 2010. In 2013, Guatemala received more than a thousand permanent immigrants and double that number of temporary immigrants.
The foreign-born population – of 73,000 – accounted for only 0.5% of the total population of Guatemala in 2013, the same proportion as in the year 2000.
Emigration flows from Guatemala decreased some 8 percent between 2009 and 2012. In addition, changes were observed in Guatemalans’ main destination countries. While most still went to the United States, movements to Canada have shown a growing trend (22%), while flows to Mexico and Spain have considerably decreased (61% and 21%, respectively).
The total unemployment rate of Guatemalan expatriates decreased slightly from 2010-2011 to 2012-2013, reaching 8.6% from 10.5%, reflecting declines of about the same magnitude among both men and women.
Guatemala is the largest receiver of remittances in Central America at 5.1 billion dollars in 2013. Since 2010, remittances to Guatemala have grown continuously, registering an increase of almost 7% between 2012 and 2013.
Over 50 thousand Guatemalan emigrants to the United States returned in 2013, according to statistics from the General Office of Migration. From Mexico, almost 30 thousand emigrants returned. Altogether these returns showed a marginal increase of less than a percentage point, compared with the year 2012.
The number of asylum requests in Guatemala is very low, at only 48 in 2013, and come mainly from El Salvador, India and Bangladesh. In 2013, the country housed 154 refugees, mostly from the neighbouring countries of Nicaragua, El Salvador and Honduras.
In 2007, the “Agreement on the Creation of the Single Central American Visa for Free Movement of Foreigners among the Republics of El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua” was approved. It creates the CA-4 visa, allowing stay and free circulation of foreigners for tourist purposes in the territory of the respective states for 90 days.
Recent trends in migrant’s flows and stocks and in labor market outcomes of emigrants
|Migration inflows (foreign nationals)||Persons||Per 1000 inhabitants||Percent change|
|Permanent migration inflows (foreign nationals) by type||Persons||% distribution|
|Temporary migration inflows (foreign nationals) by type||Persons||% distribution|
|Migration outflows (nationals)||Persons||% of total||% change|
|From unstandardised destination country data||2009||2010||2011||2012||2012||2012/2009|
|Asylum seekers and refugees||Per million inhabitants||Number of persons|
|Inflows of asylum seekers||1.0458792358109||1.4279324530832||1.1934099109113||3.1031400350771||1.6925904087206||48|
|Refugees resident in the country||9.6220889694603||9.9955271715827||10.541787546383||10.343800116924||10.125800951087||160|
|Components of population growth||Per 1000 inhabitants|
|Foreign-born population||Percentage of the total population||Persons||% change|
|Remittances||Millions of dollars||% of GDP||% change|
|Macroeconomic indicators||Annual growth in %||Average annual growth||Level|
|GDP/per capita ((PPP ) in constant 2011 international dollars)||0.3||1.6||0.4||1.1||0.93354665406223||7063|
|Labour market outcomes of emigrants in Europe and the United States||Percentages|