Harris and Hispanic Caucus discuss Northern Triangle banking and lending options


Vice President Kamala Harris and members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus this week discussed microcredit and digital banking technology options in the Northern Triangle to help tackle a root cause of the immigration crisis, Axios learned. .

Why is this important: Developing infrastructure to disperse foreign aid more directly is one way to ensure Central American residents of Guatemala, El Salvador, and Honduras U.S. support amid concerns about local government corruption.

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The subject was discussed during a CHC meeting with Harris on Monday and provides insight into a strategy the administration plans to redistribute humanitarian aid to people who often feel pressured to seek refuge in the United States.

The big picture: The governments of the Northern Triangle struggled with stability and transparency, which hampered the economic success of their citizens.

  • Environmental disasters, gang violence and, more recently, the COVID-19 pandemic have fueled the desire to migrate north.

  • Digital banking technology has become increasingly popular overseas as a way to quickly distribute foreign aid directly to citizens.

  • More people in developing countries own mobile phones and can download mobile money applications more easily than accessing traditional banking systems.

What they say: “There is a whole large segment in most developing countries that do not have access to traditional lending mechanisms, and digital is much faster, transparent and fairer,” George Ingram, member of the Brookings Institution.

But, but, but: Republican lawmakers should resist the idea.

  • They criticized the vice president’s work on immigration, calling him for not having traveled to the US-Mexico border to date.

  • Raising money in the region would also be a reversal on the part of the Trump administration, whose strategy was to cut funding to the region.

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