US VP Kamala Harris announces USD 3.2 billion migration fund for Central American countries

US President Kamala Harris announced on Tuesday a fresh USD 1.9 billion in private sector funding aimed at boosting jobs in hopes of reducing migration from Central America. The announcement was made at a Latin America summit in Los Angeles. Leaders of Mexico and other affected countries have snubbed the summit.

Tackling root causes of rising migration to the US has become a top priority for US President Joe Biden and the task has been handed to Harris.

Republican Party has seized upon the issue of migration. Donald Trump, former US president who was from Republican Party wanted to build a physical wall along southern border of the USA to deter migration.

At Latin America Summit in Los Angeles, Harris’ unveiling of USD 1.9 billion in business commitments has come a day before President Biden is due to be present. The fresh funding is in addition to USD 1.2 billion announced last year.

The funding is aimed at creating economic opportunities in the impoverished so-called Northern Triangle of El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras

During her announcement, Harris also announced creation of  “Central American Service Corps” funded through US aid to mentor young people

A White House statement said that the investments aim “to provide hope for people in the region to build safe and prosperous lives at home.”

Interestingly, none of the Northern Triangle leaders are attending the summit. Mexican President Obrador is absent too But Prime Minister Ariel Henry of Haiti — another rising source of migrants as the country further descends into violence —  will attend.

(With inputs from agencies)

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