UN Population Division, Department of Economic and Social Affairs,
with support from the UN Population Fund (UNFPA)

MIGRATION NEWS, Vol. 3, No.10, October 1996


Vol. 3, No. 10  October, 1996

     Migration News summarizes the most important immigration and

integration developments of the preceding month.

Topics are grouped by region:  North America, Europe, Asia,

and Other.

     There are two versions of Migration News.  The paper edition

is about 8,000 words in length, and the email version about


     The purpose of Migration News is to provide a monthly summary

of recent immigration developments that can be read in 60

minutes or less.  Many issues also contain summaries and

reviews of recent research publications.

     Distribution is by email.  If you wish to subscribe, send

your email address to: Migration News


     Current and back issues may be accessed via Internet on the

Migration News Home Page--- http://migration.ucdavis.edu

There is no charge for an email subscription to Migration

News.  A paper edition is available by mail for $30 domestic

and $50 foreign.  Make checks payable to UC Regents and send

to: Philip Martin, Department of Agricultural Economics,

University of California, Davis California 95616 USA.

Migration News is produced with the support of the University

of California-Berkeley Center for German and European

Studies, the German Marshall Fund of the United States, and

the Pew Charitable Trusts.

ISSN 1081-9916


Immigration Overhaul

Naturalization Controversy

Welfare Changes Implemented

Mexico: Polls, Remittances and Economy

INS Enforcement

Canadian Immigrants


Germany Begins to Return Bosnians

UK: Welfare for Asylum Seekers

France: African Immigrants

Sweden Tightens Asylum

Italy:  Amnesty for Enforcement Assistance?

Illegal Immigration into Spain

Immigration in Austrian Elections

Kurds and Refugees

Illegal Immigration into Poland


Internal Migration and Stability in China

Singapore:  Illegals in Construction

Foreign Workers in Malaysia

Taiwan Considering Freeze on Foreign Worker Permits


    Saudi Arabia and Kuwait:  Reduce Dependence on Foreigners?

Immigration into Argentina 100,000 Immigrants to Australia


Slate on Immigration

 Editors' note:  We are pleased to announce an expanded web

page at http://migration.ucdavis.edu, with links to

additional migration materials.  We will soon be adding a

search engine to expedite the retrieval of information from

past issues of Migration News.




Immigration Overhaul

     On September 25, 1996, by a vote of 305 to 123, the House

approved a bill aimed at reducing illegal immigration and

reducing access of legal immigrants to welfare.

In the Senate, the immigration bill was included in a

spending proposal needed to fund government operations, and

the Clinton administration and Democratic Senators were thus

able to remove several provisions of the House-passed bill

that would have tightened the access of legal immigrants to

welfare services.

     The House on September 28, 1996 approved the final version of

the immigration and budget bill by a vote of 370-37.  The

Senate approved the bill on September 30, 1996 by a vote of

84 to 15.

     President Clinton signed the bill into law immediately.

Between the first and second House votes, there were intense

negotiations between the White House and Congress over

provisions in the bill that would have made legal immigrants

deportable if they received more than 12 months of welfare

benefits, and raised the income needed for US citizens to

sponsor their immediate relatives for admission.  The

deportation-for-use-of-benefits provision was dropped, and

the sponsor-income requirement was reduced.

     In a separate vote on September 25, 1996, the House also

passed the Gallegly amendment, which would permit states to

deny newly-enrolled K-12 children free public education, by a

vote of 254 to 175.  The Senate did not consider the Gallegly


     Some commentators saw the new immigration bill as an echo of

Proposition 187, the California initiative approved by a 59-

41 percent vote in November 1994 that would have created a

state-run system to prevent illegal immigrants from gaining

access to social services, including K-12 education.

Others stressed that the 1996 legislation originated in the

budget and law enforcement committees rather than the

immigration committee.  The welfare overhaul law came from

budget committees, and the anti-terrorism law from

enforcement committees.

     Provisions.  The immigration bill includes three major sets

of measures to reduce illegal immigration and reduce the

access of legal immigrants to welfare.

     First, it provides for stronger border enforcement, adding

1,000 Border Patrol agents per year for five years, bringing

the total from 5,175 in 1996 to almost 10,000 by the year

2000.  The new immigration law also requires INS to build a

14-mile triple fence on the US-Mexican border south of San

Diego, and increases penalties for smuggling aliens into the

US and for using false documents to obtain US jobs or welfare


     The new law adds 1,200 INS investigators, the agents who

inspect US work places for unauthorized workers, and

apprehend and deport criminal aliens.

     Second, it introduces a pilot telephone verification program

to enable employers to verify the status of newly-hired

workers, and social service agencies to determine the legal

status of applicants for benefits.  However, employer

participation in the verification program is voluntary, and

no national worker eligibility verification system that

mandates employer participation could be established without

new legislation.

     The Commission on Immigration Reform in 1995 called a

mandatory national verification system "the linchpin" of

efforts to reduce illegal immigration.

     The new law includes incentives for states to develop

counterfeit-resistant driver's licenses and birth


     The conference committee deleted a provision in the bill that

would have added 350 labor inspectors, and set higher

penalties for companies that repeatedly violate employer

sanctions laws.

     The new legislation makes it easier for employers to defend

themselves against suits from job applicants who believe that

they were discriminated against by employers checking their

legal status.  Job applicants who believe that employers

checking their legal status discriminated against them must

now prove that the employer intended to discriminate.

     Third, the immigration bill expands and reinforces

restrictions on the access of LEGAL immigrants to welfare

benefits.  Non-US citizens were barred from Food Stamp

assistance and Supplemental Security Income by the welfare

law enacted in August 1996, but that law left it to states to

decide whether to permit legal immigrants to participate in

Medicaid, medical assistance for the poor.

     President Clinton's last minute negotiations preserved the

right of states to offer Medicaid to non-US citizens,

including for the treatment of AIDS.  Persons with AIDS are

not allowed to immigrate but, once in the US, Medicaid can

pay for their treatment.

     Clinton also got a provision dropped that would have

subjected to deportation immigrants who received means-tested

federal welfare assistance, including AFDC and Medicaid, for

more than 12 months during their first seven years in the US.

Under the House-approved bill, legal immigrants would have

been ineligible for Medicaid benefits during their first five

years in the US.  If they applied in year six, their

applications could be rejected if the immigrant's income and

assets together with those of his/her sponsor exceeded

certain limits, an application of "deeming" that the

immigrant has access to her sponsor's income and assets.

Deeming is meant to shift the cost of maintaining needy

immigrants from the taxpayers to the sponsors who agreed to

support them in the US.

     To make it less likely that immigrants will request welfare

assistance after their arrival, US sponsors will have to have

higher incomes.

     Sponsors of immigrants now have to have an income at least

equal to the poverty line, $15,569 for a family of four in

1995.  Under the new immigration law, US citizens who want to

bring spouses and minor children into the US will have to

have incomes that are 125 percent of the poverty line,

$19,461, down from 140 percent in the House-approved bill.

Sponsors are allowed to include the partial value of assets

such as cars and homes to reach this level.

     In 1994, about 36 percent of the sponsors of immediate

relatives had incomes that were less than 140 percent of the

poverty line, and 44 percent of those who sponsored parents

and adult siblings had incomes less than 200 percent of the

poverty line.

     New systems will be put in place to deal with foreigners

convicted of committing crimes in the US, including the

establishment of a national database of such persons.

Foreigners convicted of entering the US illegally, or

overstaying a previous visa, will be denied new visas to

enter the US for 10 years.

     An INS officer will decide whether a person seeking asylum at

the US border is granted asylum.  A negative decision would

have to be appealed within seven days to an immigration

judge, and then further appeals are possible.

     The chairman of the House immigration subcommittee, Lamar

Smith (R-TX), said that the new immigration bill "secures

America's borders, penalizes alien smugglers, streamlines

removal of criminal and illegal aliens and ends non-citizens'

abuse of the welfare system."

     The 13 Democratic legislators on the conference committee

were excluded from the negotiations that settled differences

between the House and Senate bills, and many attacked the

conference bill as "fatally flawed."  Among the provisions

subject to such criticism: under the new immigration law, an

INS decision would be reviewed only if the US Supreme Court

agreed to consider it, and the INS would be exempt from

environmental laws when building roads and barriers along the


     According to many Democrats, the new immigration law sends

the message that, if a foreigner can get into the US, it will

still be easy to find a job, but it will be more difficult to

obtain welfare benefits.

     Gallegly amendment.  A 5-4 US Supreme Court decision in 1982,

Plyler v Doe, requires states to provide K-12 education to

illegal alien children.

     California's Proposition 187, if implemented, would end free

public education for illegal alien children, and the Gallegly

amendment would have overturned the Supreme Court decision

thus allowing it to happen.

     President Clinton in August 1996 threatened to veto any

immigration bill that would "kick children out of school and

onto the streets."  Republican Presidential candidate Bob

Dole, with the urging of California Governor Pete Wilson,

strongly supported the Gallegly amendment, asserting that

"the wonderful California quality of life is being threatened

by the flood of illegal immigration."

     In an attempt to make the amendment acceptable, several

modifications were offered.  Rep Elton Gallegly (R-CA) in

August proposed that illegal aliens currently in K-12 schools

could remain in classes, but states would have been allowed

to charge them tuition if they continued from elementary to

secondary school.

     Rep. Brian P. Bilbray (R-CA) offered a compromise on

September 12 that would have left in place the obligation of

states to educate illegal alien children, but would have

shifted the cost to the federal government.  The cost of

educating the estimated 700,000 illegal alien children in K-

12 US schools--almost 400,000 in California-- is thought to

be about $4 billion per year.

     On September 24, the Gallegly amendment was modified again to

permit illegal alien children enrolled in US schools on July

1, 1997 to graduate, and was set for a separate vote.

Road to Reform.  The Immigration Control and Financial

Responsibility Act of 1996 began in the House and Senate in

1995 as comprehensive bills aimed at reducing illegal and

legal immigration, as recommended by the Commission on

Immigration Reform in June, 1995.

     However, the Clinton administration, most Democrats, and

interest groups that ranged from high-tech companies to

church groups to ethnic lobbies opposed reductions in legal

immigration, and changes in the legal immigration system were

therefore removed from both bills in Spring 1996.

     On September 11, 1996 the House appointed its 19 members to

the House/Senate conference committee responsible for working

out the differences between the House and Senate immigration

bills.  The Senate appointed 11 members in August.

     The conference committee was scheduled to meet on September

17, but the meeting was canceled because of disagreements

between Republicans over the Gallegly amendment.

     After the conference committee reported the bill, and the

House approved it, the Clinton Administration demanded and

secured modifications of the provisions affecting the access

of legal immigrants to welfare benefits in the Senate.

What Next?  Most commentaries on the new immigration law were

variations on one of three themes.  First was the party

political interpretation--Republicans closely linked to

businesses that benefit from immigration do not want to

really stop the influx, but they do want to prevent

immigrants from gaining access to welfare benefits and


     In Spring 1996, a coalition of immigration admissionists,

civil libertarians, high-tech companies, and libertarian

think tanks successfully opposed proposals originally made by

the Commission on Immigration Reform, and endorsed by the

Clinton administration, that would have reduced legal

immigration and imposed new fees on US employers who wanted

to bring immigrants into the US to fill vacant jobs.

Second were accounts that said 1996 marked a tougher attitude

on illegal immigration, and a new skepticism of legal

immigration, as exemplified by Senator Diane Feinstein (D-

CA), who says that "people want a slowdown" in immigration.

     President Clinton and Republican candidate Dole have been

sparring in states such as California and Florida about who

is tougher on illegal immigration.  Clinton touts his

administration's addition of Border Patrol agents, and the

streamlining of deportations of criminal aliens.  Dole

agrees, and goes further, arguing states should be allowed to

keep illegal alien children from attending K-12 schools, and

favors restricting family unification to immediate family


     Dole does not favor ending the current practice of birthright

citizenship, under which babies born in the US are US

citizens, even though ending birthright citizenship is a

plank in the Republican platform.

     Some observers credit Republicans Pete Wilson and Pat

Buchanan for laying the groundwork for stepped up measures

against illegal immigration, and for reduced legal

immigration.  These politicians, the argument runs, have

broadened a narrow focus on the economic impacts of

immigration to a concern about broader effects on welfare,

language and identity.

     Third are commentaries that say that 1996 showed that the US

was getting tougher on both illegal and legal immigration.

Indeed, many immigrant admissionists predicted that the next

target of restrictionists would be naturalization, following

stories that unqualified immigrants are allowed to


     Finally, some speculate that future immigration policy-making

may start with tough legislation, followed by softer

corrective legislation.

     For example, pressure is building to modify a provision of

the anti-terrorism bill signed into law by President Clinton

in April 1996--that which calls for the deportation of any

immigrant who has been convicted of a felony--"one strike and

you're out."  Stories of immigrants who committed crimes 20

or 40 years earlier, served their sentences, and then became

subject to deportation when they returned from a trip abroad,

or otherwise came to the attention of INS, convinced many

people of the need for some flexibility.

     The anti-terrorism law provides no judicial discretion--there

is no appeal from deportation for convicted immigrant

criminals detained by INS.  When signing the law, President

Clinton said that he would send Congress corrective

legislation to permit relief from deportation in some cases.

     Marc Lacey, " Toned Down Bill on Immigration Passes in

House," Los Angles Times, September 29, 1996.  Gerald Seib,

"Backlash over immigration has entered mainstream this year,"

Wall Street Journal, September 27, 1996.  Marc Lacey,

"Immigration Bill Logjam Broken, Sources Say," Los Angles

Times, September 24, 1996.  Eric Schmitt, " Immigration Bill

Poses a Dilemma for GOP," New York Times, September 21, 1996.

     Michael Doyle, "Presidential Politics Shape Immigration Bill

Debate," Sacramento Bee, September 18, 1996. Eric Schmitt,

"Dole's Immigration Stance Splits GOP in Congress," New York

Times, September 13, 1996.  Adam Clymer, "Dole's Moves

Sidetrack a Treaty and a Bill," New York Times, September 13,

1996.  Herbert Sample, "Gingrich sees immigration reform

victory," Sacramento Bee, September 11, 1996.


Naturalization Controversy

     In FY96, some 1.1 to 1.2 million immigrants are expected to

become American citizens, more than doubling FY95's record

445,852 naturalizations.  The previous record was 441,979

naturalizations in 1944.

     Seventy-five percent of the new US citizens are in or near

the cities of New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco,

Miami and Houston, and most are expected to vote Democratic

in 1996 elections.

     There are about eight million immigrants in the US who are

eligible to naturalize.  The INS projects that another 1.1

million foreigners will naturalize in FY97.

     The upsurge in naturalizations prompted some Republicans to

charge that the Democratic Clinton administration is cutting

corners to get more Democratic voters.  Each newly-

naturalized citizen receives a packet that includes a voter

registration card and a letter from the president.

     The presidential letter begins: "Dear Fellow American:  I

want to congratulate you on reaching the impressive milestone

of becoming a citizen of our great nation.  As you enjoy the

benefits of American citizenship and assume the

responsibilities that accompany it, you follow the many brave

men and women who have sacrificed to establish and preserve

our democracy over the last two centuries."

     On September 10, 1996, a US House of Representatives

subcommittee held hearings on allegations that some private

firms certified to test the English skills of applicants for

naturalization were approving applicants who could not speak


     Republicans unveiled a memo written by Vice President Gore's

office that says: "INS warns that if we are too aggressive at

removing the roadblocks to [naturalization].... we might be

publicly criticized for running a pro-Democratic voter mill."

A Chicago Alderman wrote a letter to Mrs. Clinton urging an

accelerated naturalization program to "provide the Democrats

with a strategic advantage" in the 1996 elections.

     Vice President Gore launched a "Citizenship USA" drive in

April 1995, speeding the elimination of the backlog of

600,000 immigrants who had requested naturalization, and

promising new applicants naturalization within 90 days.

     On September 24, 1996, several Immigration and Naturalization

Service employees testified that the INS was naturalizing

immigrants who had committed crimes in the US, usually a bar

to US citizenship.  An INS agent charged that 5,000 of the

60,000 immigrants naturalized during mass ceremonies in Los

Angeles in August 1996 had criminal records.  Since

Citizenship USA began, some 327,000 persons have been

naturalized in Los Angeles, including 60,000 on August 7-9

and August 14-16,1996.

     INS officials insisted that such statements were misleading,

and that no more than 69 of the 5,000 immigrants with

criminal records would have been denied naturalization.  Many

of the crimes were violations of immigration law, which the

INS does not consider sufficient reason to disqualify

applicants from US citizenship.

     INS promised to revoke the US citizenship of anyone

naturalized improperly, although the INS admitted on

September 25 that because it had not yet decided what

procedures to use, it had not yet taken back the citizenship

of anyone improperly naturalized in Los Angeles in 1996.  The

INS denaturalized through federal courts 15 people in FY94,

11 in FY95, and two people in FY96.

     On September 26, California's Secretary of State ordered

county voter registrars not to permit non-citizens to vote in

the November 1996 elections, after it was revealed that 727

non- citizens in Los Angeles county had filled out the voter

registration form attached to the driver's license

application under the new "motor voter" law.

     In applying for the license, they had signed the form on

which the signatory asserts, under penalty of perjury, that

he/she is a US citizen at least 18 years old and thus

eligible to vote.

     The INS is drafting regulations for "administrative

denaturalizations" that are possible within one year of

naturalization.  Under the draft regulations, newly

naturalized citizens who are accused of concealing criminal

records will be given 30 days to respond to the charges.

     There are many explanations for the upsurge in

naturalizations.  One factor often cited is the passage of

Prop. 187 in November 1994 in California, followed by the

August 1996 welfare law that makes many legal immigrants

ineligible for welfare benefits.

     A second factor was the INS requirement that many immigrants

had to visit INS to replace their old green cards.  They were

reminded that, for $20 more, the immigrant could become a

naturalized US citizen.

     A third factor which will remove a deterrent to

naturalization is Mexico's pending introduction of dual

citizenship--Mexican-born persons are about one-fourth of US


     The rush of new voters may not change the political dynamics

of immigrant districts.   The 33rd Congressional District in

southeast Los Angeles County, represented by Lucille Roybal-

Allard (D-CA), has had the fewest registered voters of any US

Congressional District--76 percent of the registered voters

in this district are Democratic, and newly-naturalized

citizens are registering Democratic at a 2 to 1 rate.

In a September 1, 1996 speech to the United Farm Workers

convention, Housing and Urban Development Secretary Henry

Cisneros asserted that 70 percent of the legal immigrants who

would lose benefits under the new welfare law were eligible

to become US citizens.

     About 300,000, one-fourth of all immigrants naturalizing in

FY96, will be given tests in English and history by private

firms rather than the INS.  One private firm, Naturalization

Assistance Services, is accused of "guaranteeing" that the

immigrant passes the test in exchange for a $850 fee.  The

INS closed 25 private centers that provided naturalization

services for a fee in 1995, including 17 operated by

Naturalization Assistance Services.

     Some of the NAS graduates reportedly did not understand the

instruction to "please take your seat" at their

naturalization ceremony.

     On September 17, more than 10,000 immigrants were sworn in as

US citizens in Dallas, Texas, the largest-ever naturalization

ceremony in Texas.  During the ceremony, a plane carrying a

banner with the note "Felicidades.  Vota Dole-Kemp," flew

overhead.  Texas is considered a critical state for

Republicans in the November election.  About half of the

immigrants sworn in were Mexican.

     Santa Clara county, which includes Silicon Valley, hired a

"naturalization czar" to coordinate the activities of

community-based organizations and volunteers who are helping

some of the 18,000 eligible immigrants to naturalize.  County

officials believe they are the first in the nation to approve

such a program.  A naturalization ceremony in San Jose,

California was held September 18 for 11,000 immigrants from

104 countries.

     If Mexican immigrants naturalize in great numbers, it will

mark a change:  The INS in 1992 reported that only 17 percent

of the Mexicans who entered the US legally in 1977 sought to

become naturalized citizens during the next 15 years.

     Hector Tobar and Jeffrey Rabin, "Massive Tide of Naturalized

Citizens Swells Voter Rolls," Los Angeles Times, September

29, 1996.  Jeffrey Rabin, "700 Noncitizen Voters Dropped,"

Los Angeles Times, September 27, 1996. Sara Fritz,

"Immigration agency disputes claim that about 5,000

naturalized in LA ceremonies concealed their records," Los

Angeles Times, September 24, 1996.  Marshall Wilson, "US

Welcomes 11,000 Citizens," San Francisco Chronicle, September

19, 1996.  "10,000 new citizens in Texas," Reuters, September

17, 1996.  Sam Howe Verhovek, "Immigrants' Anxieties Spur a

Surge in Naturalizations," New York Times, September 13,

1996.  William Branigin, "House GOP Accuses Democrats of

Minting New Voters," Washington Post, September 11, 1996.


Welfare Changes Implemented

The Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity

     Reconciliation Act of 1996, scheduled to go into full effect

on October 1, 1996, makes most legal and illegal immigrants

ineligible for welfare assistance.  To obtain maximum federal

payments, states have an incentive to implement the new

welfare law as quickly as possible.

     An estimated one million legal immigrants, including 400,000

in California, are expected to lose about $4 billion per year

welfare benefits they are now receiving, an average $4,000


     Under the bill, foreigners are grouped into three major

categories for the purpose of determining their access to

welfare assistance:

  -   Legal immigrants who have worked in the US for at least 40

      quarters (10 years), are veterans or members of the Armed

      Forces, or have been admitted as refugees, retain access to

      welfare as before.

  -   "qualified aliens,"--most legal immigrants--are not

      eligible for specific means-tested federal benefit programs

      for a five-year period after their entry into the United


  -   "non-qualified aliens" are unauthorized or illegal aliens

      and some categories of non-immigrants who have INS permission

      to remain in the US, such as aliens with Temporary Protected

      Status (TPS) or Persons Residing under Color of Law (PRUCOL).

     They are not eligible for most federal public benefits, or

for many state and local public benefits.

     The assistance programs to which legal immigrants continue to

gain access are primarily those that deliver in-kind

services, such as soup kitchens, or those that provide

emergency help, such as violence and abuse prevention


     Courts may slow the removal of immigrants from welfare

programs, since lawyers are preparing to sue states as they

remove immigrants from the welfare rolls.  A major argument

will be that the new welfare law unconstitutionally

discriminates against a class of people -- immigrants who

have not become citizens -- when it cuts off their

Supplemental Security Income and food stamp benefits.  Under

the 14th Amendment to the US constitution, the equal

protection under the law amendment, governments may not

discriminate on the basis of, inter alia, national origin.

     The new welfare and immigration laws include provisions that

ALLOW state and local government employees to report to INS

illegal aliens who seek police or medical assistance, or

education for their children; this provision invalidates the

ordinances passed by many "sanctuary" cities that prohibit

their employees from reporting suspected illegal aliens to

the INS.

     California Governor Pete Wilson issued instructions to have

in the welfare law that allows city workers to have state

agencies comply with this provision as soon as possible.

New York Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani announced on September 30,

1996 that New York City would sue the federal government,

arguing that the new welfare law violates the due process

rights of immigrants, since it requires immigrants to pay

taxes, but denies them welfare benefits.

     Welfare benefits have been reduced for all US residents, and

cash assistance to eligible poor people is no longer an

entitlement: "Effective Oct. 1, 1996, no individual or family

shall be entitled to any benefits or services under any state

plan."  However, there is some discretion in how states

devise new ways to help the poor; states are required to file

plans with the US Secretary of Health and Human Services that

outline how they will help the poor.

     New computer systems will have to be developed in order to

implement the new welfare law.  For example, the new law

limits an individual to a maximum five years of support, so

to prevent persons from obtaining five years of benefits in

one state, and then moving to another to obtain more

benefits, state computer systems will have to be linked to a

national system.

     One provision of the new welfare law requires the federal

government to set up a system within 18 months to verify the

citizenship status of applicants for assistance.

     Food Stamps.  More immigrants receive assistance under Food

Stamps than any other welfare program, and the ban on

immigrants receiving Food Stamps produced considerable

confusion in state governments.

     In most states, immigrants applying for Food Stamps for the

first time near the end of September 1996 were rejected.  In

California, new Food Stamp applications from legal immigrants

were rejected after September 23, 1996.  However, in other

states, there was confusion, as intake workers in some states

accepted applications, and in others did not.

     There was even more variance in how states treated immigrants

whose need for Food Stamps was being re-certified.  President

Clinton directed USDA to permit all states to keep immigrants

currently on Food Stamp rolls until August 22, 1997, one year

after the welfare law was signed.

     However, states may remove legal immigrants from Food Stamp

rolls when their eligibility is re-verified, and there was

uncertainty as to whether to wait for the normal eligibility

review, which could permit some immigrants to receive food

stamps through September 1997, or to review the legal status

of recipients sooner.

     California has 3.2 million Food Stamp recipients, including

436,000 legal immigrants.  They currently receive benefits

worth an average of $182 per month.  About 373,000 immigrants

will not be eligible for the program once the welfare law is


     California had 2.7 million people receiving AFDC in June

1996, including 390,000 or 15 percent non-US citizens.  There

were also 379,000 non-US citizens receiving SSI payments, and

258,0000, or two-thirds, are expected to be declared


     In the Rio Grande Valley of Texas, an estimated one of every

12 to 15 people is a legal immigrant who stands to lose food

stamps under the new welfare law.  The unemployment rate in

the Rio Grande Valley is typically 15 to 20  percent, making

it doubtful that those who lose Food Stamps can increase

their earnings to make up for the lost benefits.

     The state of Texas estimates that about 187,000 legal

immigrants will lose food stamps, 22,000 will lose welfare

benefits, and 53,160 will be cut off from Supplemental

Security Income.

      New Jersey has announced that the 21,000 legal immigrants in

the state getting Food Stamps will continue to receive them

for at least six months.

     Governor Christine Todd Whitman also announced that New

Jersey intends to provide some cash, medical, and disability

benefits to legal immigrants with state funds after

immigrants are removed from federal programs, leading some to

speculate that immigrants needing such services will move to

states such as New Jersey.  About 15,000 legal immigrants

receive cash assistance in New Jersey, 50,000 receive

Medicaid, and 25,000 get SSI payments.

     Governor Parris N. Glendening said that Maryland will assume

the cost of welfare benefits for immigrants when they are

removed from the federal rolls.  Maryland estimates that it

will cost the state about $9 million a year to continue

benefits to 2,155 legal immigrants.  The state will not pick

up the cost of Food Stamps, estimated at nearly $10 million,

but will subsidize food stamps for 2,217 immigrant children.

In 1995, for the first time, the percentage of Hispanics in

poverty, 30.3 percent, exceeded the share of Blacks in

poverty, 29.3 percent.  The immigrant welfare restrictions

are expected to increase Hispanic poverty. For more information, see


     Employer Reactions.  A few employers are reportedly worried

that some of the 2.3 million working Americans who receive

Food Stamps might expect higher wages if they no longer

qualify for Food Stamps.  US citizens with three dependents

can qualify for Food Stamps if they earn less than $17,000

per year.

     According to the Restaurant Association of Metropolitan

Washington, employers thought more about the additional

workers who would be available when the new welfare law

required people to go to work than about the loss of the

subsidies to employers provided by Food Stamps and other

indirect welfare programs.  A "large percentage" of the 5,600

entry-level restaurant workers in the Washington area, who

start at $6.25 per hour, are immigrants.

     At Marriott, where hourly workers earn an average $7 an hour,

or $14,560 a year, some hotels are helping immigrants to

become naturalized citizens by offering citizenship classes.

Other Programs.  Lawyers for California Governor Wilson

argued that the federal judge who prevented the

implementation of Prop. 187 in November 1995 should now

permit California to begin implementing some of the

initiative's provisions because of the new welfare law.

     There are about six million legal immigrants in California

who are not US citizens.  Of these, 1.1 million currently

receive benefits under the Medi-Cal program.  (Medi-Cal is

funded by the state and federal governments, and provides

health coverage for roughly six million poor Californians,

almost 20 percent of all residents--those eligible must have

family incomes below $23,634 for a family of three in 1996.

Illegal aliens are not eligible for Medi-Cal coverage).

Many of these legal immigrants might become US citizens to

retain their eligibility for Medi-Cal.  The US Congressional

Budget Office assumes that one-third of California's 1.1

million legal non-citizens on Medi-Cal will become citizens

in order to remain eligible for benefits.

     A California Assembly committee in mid-July criticized the

INS for "dumping" illegal immigrants in San Diego area

hospitals to avoid paying for their care.  According to

critics, Operation Gatekeeper has led to more injuries to

illegal immigrants, and prompted the INS to take injured

aliens to area hospitals before determining their immigrant

status.  If an alien is not formally in INS custody, the

costs of health care are borne by the local

government/hospital, and not by INS.

     As a result of the new welfare law, 200 severely disabled

illegal immigrants under 24-hour care in California nursing

homes--at a daily cost of $73 per day, and an annual cost of

$5 to $6 million-- will no longer have their bills paid,

despite an effort by Governor Wilson to persuade the

Legislature to extend their care in August.  Some in the

Legislature refused to approve extended care because they

thought such an extension would conflict with Prop. 187.

Since 1988, severely disabled illegal immigrants and pregnant

illegal immigrant women in California have received state-

subsidized care under a bill signed by Republican Governor

George Deukmejian.  Wilson ordered the prenatal care for

illegal alien women halted as soon as possible.

     There are also 14,000 to 15,000 legal immigrants now

receiving care in California long-term or nursing facilities.

New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani on September 11 promised

not to implement the provision of the new welfare law that

permits city employees to report to INS illegal immigrants

who seek services like police protection, hospital care and

public education.  Giuliani is described as a "national

spokesperson" for immigrants--the Republican mayor of

Democratic New York City who believes that high levels of

immigration are good for New York and the US.

     Since 1985, New York City has prohibited its 200,000

employees from reporting any of the 400,000 suspected illegal

aliens to the INS.

     On September 30, 1996, George Soros announced a $50 million

gift to the newly established Emma Lazarus Fund to provide

grants to community groups that could use it, for example, to

pay an immigrant's $95 citizenship application fee or to

provide the English-language instruction needed for


     Patrick McDonnell, "Border: Welfare measure may allow public

employees to report suspects to INS," Los Angeles Times,

September 30, 1996.  Vivian Toy, "Some Immigrants Begin to

Lose Food Stamps Under New Law," New York Times, September

25, 1996.  Kirstin Downey Grimsley, "New Welfare Law Worries

Employers in Low-Wage Businesses," Washington Post, September

24, 1996. Ken Chavez and Brad Hayward, "Mix-up on food

stamps," Sacramento Bee, September 20, 1996.  Louis

Freedberg, "Welfare Law's ID Provision Causes Concern," San

Francisco Chronicle, September 19, 1996. Elizabeth Llorente,

"Whitman to Keep Welfare for Legal Aliens," The Record,

September 19, 1996.  Michael Dresser, "Md. to pay benefits to

immigrants," Baltimore Sun, September 17, 1996.  David

Firestone, "NYC Mayor to Sue Over U.S. Welfare Provision on

Aliens," New York Times, September 12, 1996.


Mexico: Polls, Remittances and Economy

     Polls.  An August 1996 Los Angeles Times poll of 1,500

Mexicans in Mexico and 1,572 US adults found that 73 percent

of those interviewed in Mexico had never been to the US.  Of

the Mexicans who had visited the US, only 34 percent had "had

a job" in the US.  The US poll was conducted by telephone,

while the Mexican poll was done in person, and 28 percent of

the Mexican interviews were conducted in towns with 2,500 or

fewer residents.

     A total of 20 percent of the Mexican respondents said that

they would seek a job in the US in the next 12 months; seven

percent said it was very likely, and 13 percent responded

that it was somewhat likely that they would head for the US

in search of work.

     Each one percent of those polled represents almost one

million Mexicans, suggesting that almost seven million

Mexicans would say, if asked, that they are very likely to

seek US jobs in the next 12 months.  There were about 4.1

million Mexican-born workers in the US labor force of 132

million in November 1994.

     Over half of the Mexicans interviewed in Mexico said they had

a family member living in the US, but only nine percent said

that their household gets money from relatives in the US.

An August 1989 poll of nearly 2,000 Mexicans found that 30

percent had a relative living in the US, and seven percent

reported that they received funds from a relative in the US.

In 1989, about 22 percent of the respondents reported that

they were very (six percent) or fairly likely (16 percent) to

move to the US within 12 months, which was interpreted to

suggest that IRCA was not deterring Mexican migrants.

     Some 95 percent of Mexicans said they were living in an

economic crisis, and almost two-thirds of Mexicans said their

personal economic situation is worse than it was three years

ago.  When asked what could reduce illegal immigration, 84

percent of Mexicans said jobs and economic development in


     Americans, by contrast, put the emphasis on enforcement.

Slightly more said that stricter border control (19 percent)

and workplace enforcement (18 percent) are needed to reduce

illegal immigration than agreed that jobs and economic

development in Mexico can slow emigration (38 percent).

Mexicans tend to view the United States far more favorably

than Americans view Mexico, but the percentage of Mexicans

who view Americans favorably has fallen since 1991.

     According to Jorge G. Castaneda, one reason for the decline

is that Mexicans have not found it easier to work legally in

the US:  "The main reason most Mexicans supported NAFTA, for

example, was they felt it would help them work in the United

States. And that, of course, hasn't happened."

     About three-fourths of the Mexicans said that NAFTA has been

bad for them personally or has had no effect on their

economic status.  A majority of Americans polled believe that

NAFTA has resulted in the loss of US jobs.

     Remittances.  Mexicans in the US send home an estimated $4 to

$6 billion per year, much of it through Denver-based First

Data Corp., which owns Western Union and Moneygram.  First

Data is affiliated with Elektra, an electronics, home

appliance and furniture chain that is an agent for Western

Union in Mexico.

     Western Union charges $29 to send the average remittance of

$300 within 15 minutes, and Elektra charges about a 10

percent fee to convert the dollars into pesos--in September

1996, Elektra offered 6.75 pesos per dollar when the exchange

rate was 7.5 pesos per dollar.  Despite these hefty fees,

many Mexicans use wire transfers because of high Mexican bank

charges for cashing non-customers' checks.

     Banco de Mexico estimates that Mexico received $3.67 billion

in remittances in 1995, slightly below the level of 1994.

Electronic transfers and competition may improve the exchange

rate obtained by Mexicans--only 30 to 50 percent of all

remittances are transferred electronically today.  The U.S.

Postal Service in August 1996 launched a Dinero Seguro

service that permits up to $3000 from any US Post Office to

any of 900 branches of Mexico's Bancomer bank--the sender is

charged $26 to send $300.

     Wells Fargo offers a similar system with Banamex.  World

Center Video Conferences is proposing a service that includes

a brief video visit between the money sender and recipients

in Mexico.

     Economy.  President Ernesto Zedillo Ponce de Leon delivered

his second State of the Nation (Informe) speech on September

1, 1996, and pledged to work for equality before the law:

"the law applies to everyone alike."  In a reference to the

US, Zedillo said that "the Mexican government will always

demand respect for the rights of our countrymen abroad."

Mexico's economy grew 7.2 percent in the second quarter of

1996, versus a 10 percent contraction in the same quarter of

1995, and unemployment fell to 5.8 percent, versus 7.3

percent in summer 1995.  Exports rose 22 percent, as did the

peso.  Grupo Modelo, maker of Corona beer, has increased

exports to the US so much that it is planning a $400 million

brewery in Zacatecas.  Zedillo predicted on September 1 that

Mexico's economy would grow by four percent in 1997.

     Mexico's National Statistics Institute (INEGI) reported

September 3 that the number of maquiladora employees

surpassed 750,000 for the first time in June 1996, up almost

20 percent since June 1995.  Maquiladora jobs are

concentrated in five northern Mexican states: Chihuahua, 29

percent of maquiladora jobs; Baja California, 21 percent;

Tamaulipas, 17 percent; and, Coahuila and Sonora, eight

percent each.

     At the end of September, the Alliance for Economic Recovery

(ARE)--key business, labor and agricultural leaders--agreed

to a new pacto that called for wage increases of 20 percent.

Mexican social security workers won a 25 percent pay increase

in September 1996.

     Non-maquiladoras recently surpassed maquiladoras as the top

source of Mexico's manufacturing exports.  Many of the

manufacturing conglomerates based in Monterrey saw their

exports boosted by the devaluation, since they had already

reduced employment to cut costs.  Alfa, for example, reduced

employment from 50,000 in 1982 to 24,000 in 1996, and doubled

its exports of steel, chemicals and other products to $1.1

billion in 1995 versus 1994.

     However, an August 5 Wall Street Journal article praising

policymakers for not backsliding on economic reform--and thus

laying the basis for higher savings and more productive

investments-- also warned that, "in the next two years, at

least, the outlook is for high unemployment and stagnant

salaries...and a higher incidence of poverty."

     President Zedillo said that Mexico must depend on internal

savings for investment, ensuring that it will be years before

wages and incomes recover for most Mexicans.  Zedillo said

that export-led growth will prompt more local and foreign

investment, and that increased investment will eventually

increase consumption and local demand.

     A Banamex survey of INEGI of manufacturing labor market data

reported that 2.9 million paid workers were employed in

Mexico's non-maquiladora manufacturing sector in 1993.

According to Banamex, the 1995 economic crisis was unusual

because Mexican companies responded by eliminating jobs, as

well as by reducing real wages.

     On July 26, Mexico announced that it would repay $7 billion

of the remaining $10.5 billion that it borrowed from the US

in 1995, leaving Mexico with $3.5 billion in debt from the

$12.5 billion borrowed from the US in 1995.

     Over 100,000 Mexicans looking for jobs from the country's

interior have flooded Mexico's northern border region.  About

60,000  have found work in Tijuana's maquiladora factories.

The city's population growth rate is now five percent

annually, double the rate for the whole country and very

difficult on the city's infrastructure.  Luckily, the workers

streaming from the south are finding work, the unemployment

rate in Tijuana is two percent.

     Maquiladoras have added 170,000 jobs since 1995 and the start

of the North American Free Trade Agreement.  Two-thirds of

the jobs are filled by Mexicans from Chiapas, Oaxaca,

Veracruz and other southern states.  Forty percent of the

workforce is male and employee turnover continues to be high,

eight percent per month on average.

     By June 30, 1996, about 78,000 US workers had qualified for a

US-government program to help find new jobs to replace jobs

because of NAFTA.  Some 8,000 US residents commute to jobs in

Mexican maquiladoras every day.

     On a scale of 0 to 10, a ranking of 54 countries for how

corruption "is affecting commercial and social life" found

that New Zealand and Denmark were least corrupt, and Nigeria

and Pakistan were most corrupt.  Mexico ranked 38 of the 54

countries, less corrupt than Brazil and Colombia, but more

corrupt than Argentina (http://www.uni-goettingen.de/~uwvw/icr.htm)

     In late August, President Zedillo promised National Campesino

Confederation (CNC) President Beatriz Paredes Rangel that the

government would clear up land titles for peasants by the end

of 1997, under the so-called Program to Certify Communal Land

Rights (Procede).

     Agriculture continues to suffer and shrink, with an estimated

500,000 to 750,000 subsistence farmers leaving agriculture

since 1990.  On July 24, 1996, Mexico announced a ten-year 15

billion peso ($2 billion) program to relieve indebted farmers

of some of their debt.  Farmers monthly payments on debts up

to 500,000 pesos ($66,000) will be reduced by about 40


     The estimated 20,000 Mixtec migrant farm workers from Oaxaca

and Guerrero in Baja California reportedly are paid 35 pesos

a day, a little under $5, or about 60 cents an hour.  In

July, some of them rioted in San Quintin after they did not

receive their weekly pay.

     In mid-August, Sanyo announced that it was paying $2 million

in ransom to the kidnappers of one of its San Diego-based

executives who was abducted in Tijuana.

     Mexicans Abroad.  On July 30, 1996, Mexico's Congress

approved a package of 17 constitutional amendments and

implementing laws that aim to reduce electoral fraud and

permit Mexicans living abroad to cast absentee ballots in the

presidential election in the year 2000.  The Mexican Senate

approved the changes by a 124-0 vote on August 2, and they

now go to Mexico's 31 state legislatures for approval.

     When 21-- two-thirds of the state legislatures in Mexico--

approve the proposed voting changes, they can go into effect.

Mexico's ruling Institutional Revolutionary Party held its

17th convention in September in Mexico City.  Most US

newspapers said that it heralded the return of the PRI's old

guard anti-reformer "dinosaurs" to power within the party.

For example, the 4,400 delegates approved a rule that, in

2000, the PRI's  nominee for president must have held

elective office and have been a party member for at least 10

years.  If this rule had been in effect, the last five PRI

candidates and Mexican presidents would have been


     Guerrillas and Drugs.  In late August, the Popular

Revolutionary Army (EPR) launched simultaneous raids in

Guerrero, Oaxaca, and Chiapas that left 13 dead.  As a

result, Mexico's army became more involved in internal

security in September 1996 than at any time since the 1930s.

The EPR is the armed wing of the Clandestine Worker's

Revolutionary Party of the Poor (PROCUP), which announced

itself June 28, 1996 in Aguas Blancas at the one-year

commemorative service for 17 campesinos slain by Guerrero


     Despite the economic crisis, Mexico expanded its troops by 15

percent to 180,000, and increased military spending a similar

percentage to $2 billion.  Many of the soldiers are draftees

from poor families, performing one year of mandatory service.

Mexico continues to be criticized in the US for doing to

little to prevent the flow of drugs across the southern

border.  Since November 1993, the US has shifted its drug

interdiction resources from the Mexican border to other

areas, and Mexico has assumed the primary responsibility for

preventing drug cultivation and smuggling into the US.

Mexico has not done the job.  In 1995, an estimated 210 tons

of cocaine entered the US from Mexico, the most ever, while

drug arrests and seizures in Mexico declined.

     A former insider in one Mexican drug cartel testified that

the cartel used INS buses to ship drugs into the US between

1986 and 1990.  The drugs were placed  on buses used to

transport illegal immigrants captured in southern Texas to

Houston, where they were flown to their homelands.

     Chris Kraul, "Flood of Workers Flows North to Booming

Tijuana," Los Angeles Times, September 24, 1996.  Patrick J.

McDonnell, "Border: Influx more than doubled in late '80s,

report says," Los Angeles Times, September 24, 1996.  Julia

Preston, "Mexico's Army Out of the Barracks," New York Times,

September 14, 1996.  Brendan Case, "Sending Dollars to Mexico

Is a Big, Lucrative Business," New York Times, September 14,


     Mark Fineman, "Mexicans See Their Nation in Moral

Decline," Los Angeles Times, September 14, 1996.  Mark

Fineman, "Mexicans' View of U.S. Positive but Skeptical," Los

Angeles Times, September 13, 1996.  Molly Moore and John

Anderson, "Drugs flow as policing is Mexicanized," Washington

Post, September 8, 1996. "Brutal Rebel Group in Mexico Leaves

Trail of Death, Uncertainty," Wall Street Journal, September

3, 1996.  Craig Torres and Dianne Solis, "Zedillo urges

patience on austerity plan," Wall Street Journal, August 12,

1996.  Jonathan Friedland, "Latin America resists reform

backlash," Wall Street Journal, August 5, 1996.  Marjorie

Miller, " The Times Poll--Despite New Laws, U.S. Still a Lure

in Mexico," Los Angeles Times, August 21, 1989.


INS Enforcement

     The Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) announced on

September 5 that a series of worksite enforcement operations

at 487 businesses in 13 central U.S. states between July 21

and August 30 resulted in the detention of 3,679 unauthorized

alien workers.  The number of aliens apprehended by state

was: Texas (2,097); New Mexico (483); Minnesota (243); Iowa

(209); Wisconsin (129); Wyoming (120); Illinois (116);

Oklahoma (103); Kansas (76); Indiana (58); Montana (31);

Missouri (9); and South Dakota (5).  The aliens detained were

from twelve countries including: Mexico (3,590); El Salvador

(50); Honduras (21); and Guatemala (8).

     The cover story of the September 23, 1996 US News & World

Report, "The New Jungle," focused on the use of illegal

immigrant workers in the Storm Lake, Iowa pork processing

plant.  The story emphasized the role of meat packing

companies in recruiting immigrant workers, and said that

"perhaps no industry is so dependent on this low-wage labor

as the nation's meat and poultry companies."

     The INS district director for Iowa and Nebraska estimates

that 25 percent of the workers in those plants in the 220

meat packing plants in the two states are unauthorized

aliens.  INS inspections of the workers in 15 plants since

1992 have led to 1,000 workers.

     At a July 1996 conference of social scientists on "The

Changing Face of Rural America," it was noted that in most

Midwestern meat packing plants, Latinos work alongside US-

born Blacks and whites.  Latinos are less than half of most

plant's work forces, and many of them are US-born citizens.

Many Latinos move to the Midwest because, unlike seasonal

farm jobs in California, where workers average 1,000 hours at

$5 to $6 per hour, workers in meat packing plants average

2,000 hours at $6 to $7 per hour, enough to support a family.

The Changing Face report is available at


     The enforcement operations included an August 25 sweep in

Jackson, Wyoming that resulted in the detention of 150

foreigners, one percent of the county's labor force.  Some

employers are calling for an investigation of the INS raids,

which they called racially motivated and dehumanizing because

all those detained were Latino, and some were transported to

jail in a horse trailer.

     The police, who joined with federal INS agents in the raid,

defended the sweep as a needed response to complaints of

automobile accidents and drug dealing linked to unauthorized

workers.  Supporters of the aliens countered that one of the

workers detained reportedly shook President Clinton's hand

when he vacationed in Jackson.

     The INS detained 124 of the 1,200 workers at two plants of

poultry processor Allen Family Foods in Maryland in late

August.  Eight poultry processing firms employ 14,000 workers

in the Delmarva area.  Most workers begin at $6 per hour, and

rise to a maximum of $7 per hour.  Turnover is high; for

every 100 jobs, 180 to 200 workers are hired each year.

     An analysis of INS apprehension data between 1976 and 1995

concluded that each additional three to four hours of border

agent time increased by one the number of aliens apprehended

along the US-Mexican border.  The same study suggested that

each 10 percent decrease in Mexican wages increased

apprehensions by eight percent.

     The number of apprehensions rose from 1.1 million in FY94 to

1.4 million in FY95, or 27 percent, after the Mexican peso

was devalued by over 50 percent.  In FY96, there were about

5,100 Border Patrol agents, and the cost of border

enforcement activities was about $600 million.

     In Texas, INS announced in September the establishment of an

Institutional Hearing Program that stations INS officers at

the Huntsville prison, so that deportable aliens are removed

from the US as soon as they finish their sentences.  About 10

percent of the 128,000 prisoners in Texas were born outside

the US.

     The INS will have a budget of $3.1 billion in FY97.

Stephen Hedges and Dana Hawkins," The New Jungle," US News &

World Report, September 23, 1996.

http://www.usnews.com/usnews/WASH/IMmHIGH.html  Joe Mathews

and Dail Willis, "Grower likens INS raid to Waco; 2,000-acre

nursery swarmed by agents," Baltimore Sun, September 19,

1996.  William Branigin, "Panel Rebukes INS on Miami Probe,"

Washington Post, September 13, 1996.  Louis Sahagun, "INS

Sweep Puts Wyoming Resort Community on Edge," Los Angeles

Times, September 13, 1996.  Joseph P. Fried, "Sweatshops

Raided in Brooklyn," New York Times, September 4, 1996.


Canadian Immigrants

     Canada is expected to add 220,000 immigrants to its 30

million population in 1996, a much higher rate of immigration

than the US, which is expecting to add about 800,000

immigrants to its 265 million population.

     Vancouver, a city of 1.6 million, is Canada's fastest growing

city, with 40,000 immigrants and Canadians moving to the city

each year.  The number of Asians living in Vancouver doubled

between 1971 and 1991, and 20,000 Asian immigrants arrived in


     One report says that Taipei's ten richest people have

established homes in Vancouver, and pumped more than US$653

million into the local economy.

     Many Asians prefer to migrate to Canada rather than the US,

both because they feel it is safer, and because Canada

permits naturalization after three years rather than five.

Many of the Asians are wealthy and want the security of a

Canadian passport--one estimate is that 80 percent of the

Vancouver homes that sold for $1 million or more in 1995 were

sold to Asian immigrants.

     Some 2,000 Chilean tourists sought asylum in Canada between

March and June 1996, a period when Canada removed visa

requirements for Chilean tourists.  Canada re-imposed visa

requirements on Chile in June.

     Representatives of the Canadian and Manitoba governments

visited Scotland in early July to encourage the immigration

of skilled workers to Manitoba.  According to a government

spokesperson, Manitoba has a shortage of skilled computer

workers.  Scots interested in emigrating to Canada must have

one year of experience in their occupation, a high level of

education and fluency in French or English.

     A Canadian immigration lawyer in the New York Times on

September 16, 1996 decried what he called the push for

"designer immigrants" in Canada--the highly skilled selected

on the basis of a point system for their education and


     Peter Rekai, "Canada's upscale influx," New York Times,

September 16, 1996.  Pierre Longnus, "Taiwan immigrants to

Canada settle in Vancouver," Agence France Presse, August 17,

1996.  "Manitoba, Canada Recruiting Skilled Scottish

Workers," Universal News Services, July 5, 1996.




Germany Begins to Return Bosnians

     Ex-Yugoslavia.  Germany plans to begin returning 320,000

persons to Bosnia-Herzegovina on October 1, 1996, in a

process that will continue through 1997. The first Bosnians

to be returned will be single adults and childless couples;

those resisting voluntary repatriation face deportation.  An

estimated 60 percent of the Bosnians in Germany are Muslim.

Bosnian Muslims who come from areas "cleansed" by Serbs will

not be returned to Serb areas.

     The interior ministers of the 16 states handle the return of

foreigners to their countries of origin, so that there is

likely to be state-to-state variation in how Bosnians are

returned.  Baden Wurtemberg plans to send letters in early

October to some Bosnians, telling them to that their

"toleration permits" to remain in Germany  expire on December

15, 1996.  Hessen, on the other hand, has said that there

will be no repatriations until April 1, 1997.

     Berlin's Interior Minister, for example, said that Bosnians

in Berlin must realize that "our hospitality is coming to an

end and that they must go home voluntarily."

     Chancellor Helmut Kohl said that, instead of spending DM15

billion on Bosnians in Germany , it makes "more sense to send

them home and to spend the money on reconstruction."

Of the 687,000 Bosnians who left the former Yugoslavia, about

320,000 are in Germany, 122,000 are in Sweden, and 80,000 are

in Austria.

     Germany and the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia in September

1996 signed a separate agreement for the return of another

120,000 Serbian refugees--mostly ethnic Albanians from

Kosovo-- currently living in Germany.  Most are expected to

return in 1997-98.

     Asylum.  Some 9,548 foreigners applied for asylum in Germany

in August, 1996, bringing the total for 1996 to 76,000,

compared with 80,500 for the first eight months of 1995.  Of

the 13,000 cases decided in August, about 900, or seven

percent of the foreigners who applied, were granted refugee

status in Germany.

     A Togo man was removed forcibly by Bavarian police from an

Adventist church in Wunsiedel, Bavaria and flown home,

signaling a tough state policy toward "church asylum."  The

church gave the man sanctuary in March.  About 60 foreigners

whose applications for asylum in Germany have been rejected

are being sheltered in churches in Bavaria.

     There were calls for the resignation of the Bavarian interior

minister for breaking a promise not to enter church grounds

to expel an asylum-seeker.

     Germany spent DM5.5 billion on asylum seekers in 1995, about

the same as in 1994.

     On September 16, 1996, the trial started for Safwan Eid, a

Lebanese asylum seeker charged with burning a Hamburg

foreigners' hostel on January 18, 1996.  Ten foreigners were

killed, and 38 injured.  Demonstrators convinced that neo-

Nazis set the fire protested outside the courtroom.

     The Eid family--parents and three children in Germany, and

two grown children still in Lebanon-- spent $15,000 to be

smuggled to Germany, admittedly as economic migrants.  Their

asylum applications were rejected, but they were allowed to

stay in Germany because Lebanon refused to take them back.

In September, 1996, 12 neo-Nazi youth were arrested for

attacking foreigners' hostels in August in the former east

German state of Saxony.  There were 165 violent attacks on

foreigners in Germany in the first six months of 1996, down

almost 50 percent from the same period in 1995.

     German Foreign Minister Klaus Kinkel on September 9 assured

visiting Israeli Foreign Minister David Levy that Germany

would continue to accept Jewish immigrants from the former

Soviet Union.  In 1990, Chancellor Kohl made an agreement

with German-Jewish leaders to permit immigration to rebuild

the aging Jewish community, and 45,000 Jews have so far

immigrated under the open immigration program.

     According to Der Speigel, some 80,000 visas have been

approved for Jewish immigrants so far, and an estimated

hundreds of thousands of Jews in the ex-USSR are waiting in

line to move to Germany.  German Development Aid Minister

Carl-Dieter Spranger earlier in 1996 said that, since Jewish

immigration is not limited, there is the potential for

conflict between Israel and Germany over the Ukraine's

800,000 Jews.

     Border Controls.  Germany has 5,700 agents to guard its

eastern borders, and another 500 are scheduled to join them

in 1997.  In 1995, they apprehended and returned about 30,000

foreigners to Poland and the Czech Republic.

     Vietnamese.  On September 17, the first chartered flight

returned 239 Vietnamese to Vietnam, the first returns since

Germany and Vietnam signed a repatriation agreement on

September 21, 1995 that anticipates the return of 40,000

Vietnamese by 2000.  About 657 Vietnamese have been returned

from Germany to Hanoi on regularly-scheduled flights.

     Labor Market.  Hans Peter Stihl, a spokesperson for

employers, urged the German government to make it easier to

employ foreign workers from countries to which Germany

exports its goods.  According to Stihl, Germany should make

it easier for foreign students to enter Germany from

developing countries and to stay in Germany after they have

completed their studies.

     During the 1960s and 1970s, unemployment rates in western

Europe were typically half those in the US.  In the 1980s,

this relationship reversed, and today the US unemployment

rate is half the German unemployment rate of 10 percent.

The unemployment rate is 15 percent in the former East

Germany, and nine percent in the former West Germany.  A

number of employment subsidies, Arbeitsbeschaffungsmassmahmen,

are being curtailed to save money--these subsidies amounted

to DM2.6 billion ($1.7 billion) in the West, and DM7.2 billion

($4.7 billion) in the East.

     The Federal Labor Office, in another study, attacked a

favorite union proposal for job creation--ban overtime.

According to the Labor Office, only about 10 percent of the

overtime hours would be used to create 85,000 additional


     Germany is in the lead among European countries in reducing

social welfare benefits.  For example, about 92 percent of

Germans with monthly incomes of less than DM580, are enrolled

in 850 Krankenkasse (sickness funds).  The Krankenkasse

allocate a fixed amount of money to regional associations of

doctors, which reimburse individual doctor-members according

to their work as measured in points.  A house call, for

example, earns a doctor 400 points.  If all doctors

collectively bill more points, the reimbursement per point

declines--in one case, from DM40 per 400 points to DM24.

Employers and workers in Germany each contribute about 6.5

percent of their gross earnings for health care, for a total

of 13 percent.  In France, employees contribute seven

percent, and employers 13 percent, for a total 20 percent.

     Herve Asquin, "Germany resolved to send Bosnians Home,"

Agence France Presse, September 30, 1996.  "Door's slam," The

Economist, September 28, 1996.  Alan Cowell, "Germans Plan to

Return Refugees to Bosnia," New York Times, September 20,

1996.  "Germany sends home first charter-load of Vietnamese,"

Agence France Presse, September 18, 1996.  Imre Karacs,

"Migrant accused of hostel death fire," The Independent,

September 17, 1996. "German official wants easier foreign

worker laws," Reuters, September 11, 1996.  "African forcibly

removed from church sanctuary and deported," Agence France

Presse, September 5, 1996.  Cornelia Bolesch, "Germany

divides on arson trial," The Guardian, September 4, 1996.


UK: Welfare for Asylum Seekers

     On September 23, the Secretary for States of Social Security,

Peter Lilley, told Parliament of new regulations which allow

asylum seekers who have been granted refugee status to make

claims for income support, housing and tax benefits for the

period they may have been denied benefits as asylum seekers.

     The regulations were announced during proceedings on the

Asylum and Immigration Act of 1996, which went into effect

July 24, 1996.

     In September, 1996, the Joint Council for the Welfare of

Immigrants (JCWI) received permission to bring a full High

Court case against the decision of the Lilley to use

emergency legislation to deny welfare benefits to all asylum

seekers who applied for asylum inside the UK in 1996.

The Asylum and Immigration Act, which bars welfare payments

to foreigners who do not apply for asylum in the UK upon

arrival, went into effect in July 1996.  However, Lilley

decided to deny welfare benefits to asylum seekers who fail

to apply immediately upon their arrival in the UK in February

before the act took effect.

     Of the 17,375 asylum applications from January through July,

1996, 11,025 were made after the foreigner entered the UK, so

that he/she was not eligible for welfare payments.

     On June 21, 1996, the JCWI won a Court of Appeal victory,

when the court declared unlawful several voluntary

organizations who offered shelter and food to asylum seekers

denied welfare payments.

     After seven Iraqis hijacked a Sudan Airways plane and

requested asylum in the UK, and an Iranian hung onto a

hovercraft from France to apply for asylum in the UK, some

newspapers complained that the UK was the European country in

which it was easiest to get asylum.  The Iranian was

reportedly involved in selling illegal pornographic videos in

Tehran, and paid smugglers $3,000 to be taken to Europe.

     There are 100,000 self-employed Asians in the UK, many

working long hours for low net wages, and some commentators

credit them with helping re-invigorate the UK economy.  At

the same time, a study of what Asian immigrant parents want

for their children shows that most want their children to be

professionals rather than self-employed.

     Some campaign groups are claiming that Britain has become a

"slave haven" for employers who abuse migrant domestic

workers.  Many cannot leave their jobs due to government

rules which state that migrant workers who enter Britain as

domestic workers are allowed to stay only if they remain with

their original employer.  The Liberal Democrats and Labour

parties plan to discuss the issue when they meet in early


     The Home Office says it has considered changing the law but

believes that would make it more difficult to control the

12,000 domestic workers who enter Britain each year.

     Stowaways on board ship cost the shipping industry at North

American posts about $45,000 per migrant, including fines,

guards, hotel or detention center costs and subsistence

expenses.  If asylum is claimed and refused, repatriation

costs are paid by the shipping company.  The International

Maritime Bureau estimates that there were 6,500 reported

stowaways worldwide between 1991 and 1993.  Some shipping

companies hire firms to repatriate the stowaways.

     "Peter Lilley Announces New Rule Bringing in Backdated

Payments for Refugees," Universal News Service, September 24,

1996.  Arthur Leathley, "Party to debate claims that Britain

is a 'slave haven,'" The Times, September 23, 1996.

     "Immigrant smugglers smashed," Daily Mail, September 20,

1996.  Nick Savvides, "Turning Back the Human Tide," Lloyds

List, September 18, 1996.  "Britain's Asians," Financial

Times, September 10, 1996.  Alan Travis, "Lilley faces fresh

fight over curb on asylum seekers," The Guardian, September

6, 1996.  Nick Buckley, "The man who hung on to a hovercraft

to sneak into Britain; this is the easiest place to get

asylum says Iranian in death-defying Channel trip," Mail,

September 1, 1996.


France: African Immigrants

     On September 12, 1996, hundreds of African and Asian

immigrants occupied a Paris police office that issues

residence permits, demanding residence permits for 350 of the

immigrants from 21 countries.

     That same day the Interior ministry announced that 57

Romanians were deported to Bucharest on a chartered flight,

and 14 Tunisians sent home by ship.  This brings the number

of foreigners removed from France to 8,800 so far in 1996, up

24 percent from the level a year earlier.

     Most of the 130 Africans removed by police from a Paris

church on August 23, 1996 remain in France--nine were

deported by mid-September, while 49 were given residency

papers.  Another 64 have been told that they will be deported

to Mali; eight were flown home.  A police union criticized

courts for annulling or suspending many of the expulsion


     Interior Minister Jean-Louis Debre's popularity soared after

ordering the raid on the church in August.  Some 32 percent

of those polled said he should play an important role in

politics in the future.

     In Mali, which is receiving nationals removed from both

France and Angola, reaction has been muted.  One government

leader deplored "the disheartening spectacle presented by

these immigrants who give the impression that returning to

Africa is like a return to hell."  The Mali government banned

a march planned for September 4 in the capital to protest the

French raid and deportations.

     Mali, a country of nine million, ranked 17 out of 174

countries in the UN Development Program's 1996 Human

Development Report.

     The Consultative National Human Rights Commission of the UN

asked the French government on September 12 to review the

implementation of 1993 immigration laws to clarify the legal

status of foreigners who have a French spouse, the foreign

spouses and children of legal foreign residents, foreign

parents of French-born children, illegal residents who have a

job and have integrated into French society, and foreign


     In addition, the Commission asked the French government to

consider creating a status similar to German "Duldung" and US

Temporary Protected Status--temporary legal residence for

non-refugees who cannot be returned because of problems at


     On September 14, Jean-Marie Le Pen led 2,000 people in a

march through Marseilles in remembrance of a teenager

allegedly killed by a youth of Arab origin.  Marchers carried

banners with slogans that included "Protect our children,"

"Immigration equals insecurity," and "France for the French."

Earlier in September Len Pen said that racial inequality was

a "fact," and that some civilizations, including the French,

are superior to others.

     A September 29 profile concluded that Le Pen was succeeding

in his bid to persuade French voters to see the National

Front as the only alternative to the political establishment.

In 1995, the National Front got 15 percent of the vote in the

first round of the presidential election, and three National

Front mayors were elected.

     Current polls show that about the same percentage of French

voters would vote for the National Front today, but they also

suggest that between 30 percent and 50 percent of French

people say they share some of Le Pen's views.  The Front's

campaign literature includes the slogan: "Neither left nor

right. French."

     Justice Minister Jacques Toubon announced that a draft bill

tightening laws against racism would likely be approved by

parliament in October.  Under the proposed legislation, even

indirect provocations to discrimination, hatred, or violence

would be a crime.

     A May 1996 profile of immigrants in France by INSEE reported

that, in 1990, four million immigrants in France were seven

percent of the French population.  The 1.7 million immigrants

in the French work force were six percent of France's 28

million labor force, but their unemployment rate was twice

the French rate.

     Brigitte Bardot, the former actress, threatened to emigrate

to Italy because, she said, of the "invasion" of Islamic


     Anne Swardson, "Anti-Immigrant Party Grows," Washington Post,

September 29 1996.  Thierry Cayol, "French far-right stages

racially-charged march," Reuters, September 14, 1996.

     "Immigrants occupy Paris police office," Reuters, September

12, 1996.  Abdoulaye Gandema and Brahima Ouedraogo, "Mali--no

place like away from home," Inter Press Service, September 6,

1996. "African illegal immigrants call for talks and reject

law, "Agence France Presse, September 1, 1996.  Milton

Viorst, "The Muslims of France," Foreign Affairs,

September/October, 1996.


Sweden Tightens Asylum

     Swedish Citizenship and Asylum Minister Pierre Schori on

September 20, 1996 proposed legislation that would tighten

asylum and refugee regulations.  Under the new regulations,

all asylum seekers would have to be photographed and

fingerprinted to prevent people from applying twice under

different names.

     In addition, only unmarried children under 18, down from 20,

could join parents granted asylum in Sweden.  The new

regulations eliminate asylum for conscientious objectors, and

eliminate asylum for persons who risk persecution in

countries where there is no state authority.

     Sweden acknowledges the criteria for granting asylum in the

Geneva Convention on Refugees, and adds three more grounds

for seeking asylum.  Sweden will grant refugees status to

those who risk the death penalty or torture, those who flee

because of armed conflict or environmental catastrophe, and

those who are persecuted based on gender or homosexuality.

Sweden's Parliament will soon vote on the legislation.

     There were 32,486 immigrants in 1995, including 2,135

foreigners accepted as refugees. The new legislation is

expected to cut the number of refugees in half, and allow the

government to streamline immigration procedures.

     Immigration peaked at 78,987 in 1994, when 80 percent of the

immigrants came from non-Nordic countries, including 33,587


     About 12 percent of Sweden's 8.8 million residents were born

outside Sweden, about the same proportion of foreign-born as

in the US.  Sweden, traditionally a very open country for

those seeking asylum, began to restrict asylum after the

dramatic rise in asylum seekers in 1994.  In 1995, the number

of immigrants fell to 32,486.

     Human Rights Watch criticized Sweden on September 24 for its

"increasingly restrictive asylum policies," after it

tightened up rules on asylees.  Human Rights Watch claims

that many asylum seekers are being denied asylum without a

fair hearing.

     Abigail Schmelz, "Sweden accused of treating asylum seekers

unfairly," Reuters, September 25, 1996.  "Sweden attacked on

rights," Financial Times, September 25, 1996. "Swedish

government proposes tightening of asylum, refugee laws,"

Agence France Presse, September 20, 1996.  Paul de Bendern,

"Sweden gets tough on immigration," Reuters, August 7, 1996.


Italy:  Amnesty for Enforcement Assistance?

     Italy is experimenting with amnesty for illegal aliens who

help the authorities locate and prosecute persons who break

immigration laws.  Under the new law, Italy "will be allowed

to grant a one-year renewable residence permit to non-EU

foreigners facing legal action who decide to collaborate with

judicial authorities by denouncing those who exploit them."

The aim is to persuade deportable aliens involved with

prostitution or drugs to provide evidence on their bosses.

A naturalized Italian citizen who moved to Italy from the

Dominican Republic when her mother married an Italian won the

Miss Italy 1996 beauty contest, prompting a number of

reflections on racial tolerance in Italy, what it means to be

Italian, and "Italian beauty."

     Two of the judges were initially suspended for saying, before

the competition, that a black woman could not represent

Italian beauty.  According to one judge, "I would happily

elect her Miss Universe.  But what has she got to do with

Italy?  She is not Mediterranean."  During the pageant, one-

third of the one million Italians who called in their vote

gave it to Mendez.   Prime Minister Romano Prodi had a

commented on the Miss Italy results, "Italy is changing," he

said.  "We also have black soccer players, and now this too

is a sign."

     The government reports that there are almost one million

foreigners living in Italy, a country with a population of 56

million, not counting naturalized Italians and "hundreds of

thousands" of illegal  immigrants.

     Italian police dismantled a smuggling ring that brought women

into Italy on false seasonal farm worker contracts.  The

women received medical certificates from Italian doctors and

were then employed in Italian nightclubs.

     About 1.5 million Italians lived outside Italy in other

European nations in 1993, including 560,000 in Germany,

380,000 in Switzerland, 250,000 in France, and 240,000 in


     "Italian coast guards capture 60 illegal immigrants,"

Reuters, September 25, 1996.  "Residence papers for illegal

immigrants who turn informer," Agence France Presse,

September 13, 1996.  Celestine Bohlen, "An 'Exotic' Italian

Beauty; Miss Italy/Pageant Turns Into 'Psychodrama,'

International Herald Tribune, September 11, 1996.  Celestine

Bohlen, "Italians Contemplate Beauty in a Caribbean Brow,"

New York Times, September 10, 1996.  "Illegal immigration

ring of eastern European women dismantled," Agence France

Presse, July 5, 1996.


Illegal Immigration into Spain

     Many Africans attempt to cross the Strait of Gibraltar by

boat from Tangier, Morocco to Tarifa, Spain.  The going rate

is $600 to cross by boat at night, and Spanish police report

that almost half of the 1,000 illegal aliens apprehended near

Tarifa were caught in August.

     There are two Spanish cities on the north coast of Morocco,

Ceuta and Melilla, and they attract Black migrants from Mali

and other countries who destroy their documents and request

asylum.  Under Spanish law, police must determine the

identity and country of origin of an alien within 40 days or

release him from detention.  Spain flies those who are being

returned to their countries of origin first from North Africa

to Spain, and then to their home country, since Morocco

refuses to take back persons who crossed into these Spanish

cities from Morocco.

     A Niger national was killed by security forces on September

23 during a demonstration Bissau, Guinea-Bissau.  About 40

Africans, who were expelled from Spain in July, were

demanding the right to return to Spain.

     The EU recently promised to provide Morocco with $6 billion

in aid between 1995 and 1999 in exchange for Moroccan help in

curbing alien and drug smugglers.  Morocco has stationed

25,000 troops on its coasts.

     "African immigrant expelled from Spain killed during

demonstration," BBC, September 25, 1996.  "Spanish police

break up two Chinese illegal-migrant operations," Deutsche

Presse-Agentur, September 17, 1996.  Marlise Simons, "Tangier

a Magnet for Africans Slipping Into Spain," New York Times,

August 26, 1996.


Immigration in Austrian Elections

     Election posters throughout Vienna proclaim, "Vienna must not

become like Chicago."  The election posters are for Freedom

Party city council candidate Rainer Pawkowicz.  Since 1990,

the Freedom Party has used Chicago as a code for crime, which

leads to immigrants and cheap foreign labor.

     Pollsters in Vienna predict that the right wing party could

take more than 25 percent in the October 13 municipal

elections.  The Freedom Party's share in national elections

have rise from five percent to 22 percent in a decade.

Austrian police broke up a smuggling ring believed to have

past four years.  The 11 smugglers were from Austria, Iran,

Syria, Turkey and Iraq and was based in a bar in the town of

Wels in Upper Austria Province.

     Immigrants from Hungary and the former Yugoslavia paid about

$10,000 each to be smuggled across the Austrian border.

Austria has become a key transit point for illegal immigrants

since the border controls with Eastern Europe were relaxed in

the region seven years ago.

     Suzann Campbell, "Chicago a foul word in Vienna election,"

Chicago Sun-Times, September 24, 1996.  "Austrian police

smash immigrant smuggling ring," Reuters, September 19, 1996.


Kurds and Refugees

     There are two major factions fighting for independence for

the 15 to 20 million ethnic Kurds scattered across Turkey,

Iran and Iraq.  In September 1996, the Kurdistan Democratic

Party (KDP) invited Saddam Hussein to send in Iraqi troops to

help the KDP oust its Kurdish rival, the Patriotic Union of

Kurdestan (PUK), from several northern Iraq cities that were

in the safe zone declared off limits to Iraqi troops after

the 1991 Gulf War.

     The fighting produced refugees.  The largest contingent, some

40,000 PUK adherents, moved to Iran, which received 1.4

million Kurdish refugees after the Gulf War.  But this time,

Iran was not as hospitable, keeping the Iraqi Kurds in tent

cities rather than permitting them free movement.

Iran hosts the largest refugee population in the world, two

million according to the Iranian government.  In an effort to

persuade Afghan refugees to return, Iran is offering them $25

and 110 pounds of wheat.

     The US offered to accept as refugees the 250 persons who

worked for the US State Department's Office of Foreign

Disaster Assistance as drivers, clerks, and translators.

With their families, some 2,100 people were flown to Guam to

apply for asylum in the US.

     The European Union is expected to offer asylum to about 6,000

Kurds who assisted in European peace keeping efforts.

About half of the ethnic Kurds live in Turkey--the so-called

bridge between East and West, the link between Christendom

and Islam.  In 1987, Turkey applied to join the EU, and in

1989, Turkey's application was rebuffed by the European

members.  Most of Turkey's trade is with the EU.

     Turkey has 60 million people, almost 70 percent live in

cities, and 60 percent are under 20--a recipe for emigration

pressure.  The populations of Istanbul and Ankara have been

doubling every 15 years, as rural residents move to the


     There are about one million ethnic Turks in southern

Bulgaria, and in May and June 1989, they began pouring across

the border into Turkey after the Bulgarian government cracked

down on Bulgarian Turks who refused to adopt Bulgarian names.

"Guam welcomes Kurdish refugees," UPI, September 17, 1996.

Daniel Pearl, "Fleeing Kurds don't get red carpet in Iran,"

Wall Street Journal, September 17, 1996.


Illegal Immigration into Poland

     Some 163 illegal immigrants from Sri Lanka, Pakistan,

Bangladesh, Liberia, India and Cameroon were detained in

September in a village in Warsaw Province, the largest group

ever found in one place in Poland.  On September 19, 40

illegal immigrants from Pakistan were detained in a bus bound

for Germany.

     The Polish Border Police report that, between January and

June, 1996, some 4,807 foreigners have been detained for

illegally entering the country.  Many came from Romania and

Armenia, followed by Ukraine, India, and Sri Lanka.

     "Group of Illegal Iraqi Immigrants Deported from Poland,"

September 26, 1996.  "Police detain largest-ever single group

of illegal immigrants," PAP News Agency, September 19, 1996.

"Illegal Immigrants from Pakistan detained in Warsaw," PAP

News Wire, September 20, 1996.




Internal Migration and Stability in China

     China's population hit 1.2 billion at the end of 1995, so

that China had 21 percent of the world's 5.8 billion

residents.  About 45 percent of China's population is under


     China is one of the world's poorest and fastest growing

countries.  Its average per capita income is about $500, and

its economic growth has been six to eight percent a year,

which means that incomes can more than double within a


     Growth is not spread evenly across China.  The fastest

economic and job growth is occurring in the largest cities

along the southeastern coast, such as Shanghai and Shenzhen.

One result is internal migration, and tensions in areas of

origin and destination that, some fear, could threaten

China's stability.

     Internal Migration.  Internal migration within China is

similar in many respects to international migration for

employment, in the sense that the Chinese registration system

acts as a barrier to rural-urban movements.  Most rural

migrants in Chinese cities are there without government

permission, unauthorized workers who fill jobs in

construction, services, and manufacturing that are shunned by

local residents.  They are liable to detection, fines and

deportation to their rural residences.

     About 70 percent , or 864 million, of China's residents live

in rural areas, where household incomes average about $225

per year, versus $425 in urban areas.  An estimated 150

million rural workers--a third of the rural labor force of

450 million--is unemployed or underemployed; Chinese data say

there are 130 million "surplus workers" in rural areas.

Surplus labor in the countryside, and unfilled jobs in

China's cities that offer wages that are low by urban

standards, but high by rural standards, have set in motion an

internal migration believed to involve at least 50 million,

and possibly 70 to 100 million, internal migrants.

     In 1994, for example, Beijing and Shanghai were believed to

have 3.3 million migrants each, so that migrants were 25 to

30 percent of those cities' populations.  Applying these

migrant percentages to China's 350 million urban residents

yields the estimate of 70 to 100 million migrants.  (It

should be noted that not all of the migrants in Chinese

cities are migrant workers; one-third may be persons away

from their registered residences for business, tourism, and

education reasons).

     From 1957 though January 1, 1994, internal migration was

restricted by a household registration system (hukou bu) that

required residents to be registered with local authorities.

There were two major classifications, agricultural resident

(nongye hukou) and urban resident (Chengshi jumin hukou), and

only urban residents were entitled to subsidized housing,

coupons for food and jobs.

     Those registered as agricultural residents remain

agricultural residents even after they move to cities, and

are subject to forced return to the countryside, as occurred

after the collapse of the Great Leap Forward in 1960.

Chinese policies treated agriculture as a source of low-cost

food for industrial workers.  This made the household

registration system necessary to prevent rural-urban

migration.  As grain prices fell and costs rose in the 1980s,

more and more rural residents migrated illegally to Chinese


     Much of the Chinese migration is circular, meaning that the

migrant retains a link to his village--Chinese terminology

distinguishes between migration (quanyi), an official change

of household registration, and floating population (liudong


     There are several reasons why many migrant workers in Chinese

cities retain a link to the land, including the fear that

government policy may change and force "agricultural"

residents back to the countryside.  Chinese who live away

from the place where they are registered are generally unable

to obtain subsidized housing and food, and can be rounded up

and deported to the place where they are registered to live.

     Migration Networks.  Young rural men tend to migrate to urban

areas to fill construction jobs, while young rural women

often find jobs in factories in the coastal areas, where they

earn $1.25 to $1.75 per day, two to five times what they

would earn farming.  Most of China's 25 million construction

workers are migrants from the countryside.

     There is currently a struggle between migrants, their

employers and local government authorities over how to deal

with the rural-urban wage gap that motivates migration.  In

Beijing, for example, employers have to pay the equivalent of

$11,600 for urban residence permits for migrant workers from

the countryside but the fine for employing a workers without

a permit is only 1,000 yuan ($120).

     Individuals can buy residence permits to live in Beijing at a

cost of $5,800.  Migrants found working without permits, or

arrested for vagrancy, are often sentenced to produce goods

for three to six months in prison factories.

     Most migrants report that they must pay for the permit or

suffer harassment.  In December 1995, 500 migrant

construction workers burned the local Communist party

headquarters to protest police harassment.  Many local

authorities find it easier to get money from migrants than

from local employers.

     Much of the matching of rural-urban migrants with jobs occurs

in or near China's railroad stations, where labor brokers

surround migrants as they alight from trains.  They charge

workers 100 to 200 yuan ($12 to $24 dollars) to "introduce"

migrant job seekers to potential employers.

     Beijing opened a recruitment center in 1996 for migrant

workers in the West Railway Station, the first step to

regularize the flow of an estimated three million migrant

workers employed by some 2,900 enterprises and private

businesses.  The West Railway Station, at 580,000 square

yards the largest railway station in Asia, was built with the

help of 20,000 migrant workers over three years.  China's

state railways have 3.4 million employees.

     Migrants often escape tight local controls on family

planning, prompting the southeastern province of Fujian in

China to pass the country's first law forcing migrant workers

to be sterilized after giving birth to one child if they want

a job in Fujian.

     The new law dictates that couples applying for jobs must

produce sterilization certificates to prove that they will

not have another child--the new rules apply only to migrant

men and women.  About 80 percent of the births in Fujian

province in 1995 were to the "daily" commuter population of

about three million.  Another one million migrants live in

Fujian province for one month or more.

     What Next? .  By all measures, the number of migrants within

China is increasing.  The Chinese State Planning Commission

predicts that only 46 percent of the nation's projected work

force of 669 million will be farmers in the year 2000, down

from 53 percent in 1995.  Other estimates predict more

displacement from agriculture due to rural population

increases and encroachment on farm land by development


     Chinese analysts are divided on what to do about rural-urban

migration.  On the one side are those who want grant legal

status to agricultural persons already living in urban areas,

and permit their families to join them in the cities.  Under

this proposal, China would abandon the household registration

system that limits mobility, and keeps migrants living in

fear of deportation.

     On the other side are those who argue that large numbers of

rural migrants could destabilize Chinese cities and the

government, and that the registration system is necessary to

prevent a massive "floating population."

     If the government restricts rural-urban migration too

tightly, there could be rebellions in poor areas.  One

Chinese analyst uses his view of the cause of the US Civil

War--the economic disparity between the North and South--to

urge measures to reduce Chinese rural poverty.  The Chinese

government should redirect foreign investment away from

coastal areas into the interior to reduce the rural poverty

that is prompting migration, he concludes.

     One Chinese city, Zhuhai near Hong Kong, in 1994 erected a

nine-foot high fence around itself to deter unauthorized

rural-urban migration.  Some see fences as a wave of the


     Chinese Abroad.  Beginning in the 1950s as "foreign labor

cooperation," China has sent workers abroad to complete 1,000

projects in 70 countries, most notably the railroad between

Tanzania and Zambia.

     Between 130,000 to 200,000 Chinese work outside the country,

mostly in Asia.  In 1994, it was estimated that remittances

and earnings from Chinese-supplied materials used in foreign

projects generated $8 billion for China in 1994.

     After economic reforms in 1978, China began to promote the

export of labor as a means to earn foreign exchange and to

ease domestic unemployment.  Three major types of government

entities--national government corporations, local government

companies, and trading companies--and today there are 130,000

to 200,000 Chinese workers abroad, mostly in Asia.  The

Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Cooperation, which

reports 200,000 migrant workers outside China in 1994,

estimated that remittances and earnings from Chinese-supplied

materials used in foreign projects generated $8 billion for

China in 1994.

     There are also Chinese "worker-trainees" employed temporarily

in Japan, ex-USSR, and the US, Chinese farmers in Japan, and

10,000 Chinese workers in South Korea.  China is asking

Japanese and Korean construction firms to consider using

Chinese workers when they win contracts in third countries,

such as the Gulf states.

     Over half of all Chinese workers abroad come from 10 of

China's 30 provinces.  About 20 percent come from the South

China provinces of Guandong and Fujian, two of the fastest

growing provinces in China.

     Chinese officials estimate that, of the 220,000 Chinese

students who have gone abroad since 1979, only 75,000 have

returned.  The Chinese government believes that part of the

blame for this 'brain drain' falls on Western nations such as

Canada and the United States whose immigration policies give

easy entry to the well-educated.

     Foreigners in China.  Eighty foreigners are applying each day

for permits to work in Shanghai.  Many of the foreigners are

employees of Sino-overseas joint ventures or foreign-owned

companies.  Nearly 3,000 foreigners have been granted work

permits since the city began requiring them in May, 1996.  An

estimated 20,000 foreigners, primarily from Hong Kong, Macao

and Taiwan live in Shanghai.

     In June 1995, the Chinese government announced that it would

reinforce its border controls to halt illegal immigration,

especially into the southern regions of the country.  More

than 20,000 foreigners enter China illegally every year,

mostly from Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia, plus a small number

of illegal immigrants from Africa and Russia.  In 1994,

police detained 12,000 illegal immigrants in the Yunnan

province and the autonomous region of Guangxi.

     "Over 3,000 foreigners get job licenses," Xinhua News Agency,

September 26, 1996.  "China says farmers' majority in work

force to end by 2000," Agence France Presse, August 18, 1996.

"Fujian to strengthen family planning among migrant

population, Xinhua News Agency, July 3, 1996.  Gary

Silverman, "Vital and vulnerable," Far Eastern Economic

Review, May 23, 1996.


Singapore:  Illegals in Construction

     Singapore employs about 350,000 foreign workers, and foreign

workers are 20 percent of the island nation's labor force.

Singapore is considered to run one of the tightest guest

worker programs in the world, regulating the ratio of foreign

to domestic workers, charging employers a monthly tax or levy

for each legal foreign worker they hire, and imposing stiff

penalties on illegal workers and their employers.

However, the Singapore press has been reporting that more and

more illegal foreign workers have been found in Singapore.

In September, 1996, two Japanese construction firms paid a

private company $10,000 to conduct midnight raids in search

of illegal foreign workers.

     The Singapore Contractors Association has called for an

amnesty so that illegal workers could be registered.  A

construction industry representative said that an amnesty

would help determine the number of number of illegal workers

currently on site and then construction companies could pay a

levy for illegal workers and they could continue to work on

the site.

     The construction industry also claims that with sub-

contractors being held accountable for the legality of the

workers they hire, they are demanding more money from the

main contractor in order to hire legal workers.

     Recent amendments to the Immigration Act and the Employment

of Foreign Workers Act make the main contractors responsible

for the legality of all workers on their sites, even workers

who, as in these cases, sneak onto the site to sleep at


     In order to decrease dependence on foreign workers, the

Singapore government launched a "Back to Work" program to

attract housewives, older persons and displaced workers into

the workforce.

     Jasbir Singh, "Two more construction giants conduct searches

on own sites," Straits Times, September 13, 1996.  "Singapore

launches 'back to work' program," Xinhua News Agency,

September 13, 1996.  Tan Hsueh Yun, "Contractors' body wants

amnesty so illegal workers can be registered," Straits Times,

September 8, 1996.


Foreign Workers in Malaysia

     A Malaysian cabinet committee on foreign workers will conduct

a study of foreign workers following complaints by

Bangladeshi workers of harassment in the southern state of

Johore.  In one incident, hundreds of Malaysians from

villages in Johore beat about 70 Bangladeshi workers,

seriously injuring seven.

     Between January and April, 1996, over 10,000 illegal

Indonesian workers have been sent home from Malaysia.  An

additional 11,000 detained and housed in Malaysian detention

camps will be deported.  Malaysia will not accept new workers

from Indonesia until after December 31.

     On September 17, the Malaysian government announced two

health screening measures to prevent foreign workers from

bring infectious disease into the country.  The Malaysian

Cabinet approved a plan to have accredited clinics in the

workers' home countries conduct the medical tests.  Also, an

agency will be set up in Malaysia to monitor the workers'

state of health.

     The government said that in 1995 about 30 percent of leprosy

cases, 11.5 percent of tuberculosis cases and 13 percent of

malaria cases involved foreign workers.

     In an effort to stop "marriages of convenience,", the

Malaysian Home Ministry announced it will revoke the work

permit of foreign workers married to local women in an effort

to gain permanent residence in Malaysia.  There are no

official figures on the number of Malaysian women married to

foreign workers.

     "Committee to meet on conduct of alien workers," New Straits

Times, September 26, 1996.  Rene Leow, "Move to curb

marriages with foreign workers," New Straits Times, September

26, 1996.  "Malaysia to deport foreign workers who marry

locals," Agence France Presse, September 25, 1996.  Bob Khan,

"Foreign workers who marry must leave,' UPI, September 25,

1996.   "Malaysia mulls review of foreign worker recruitment

policy," Agence France Presse, September 22, 1996.  Ho Wah

Foon, "More thorough health checks for foreign workers in

pipeline," Straits Times, September 19, 1996.  Kamarul Yunus,

"Ministry told to check weaknesses in health screening,"

Business Times, September 18, 1996.  "Malaysia to monitor

foreign workers' health status," Xinhua News Agency,

September 18, 1996.  "Malaysia tightens health checks for

foreign workers," Agence France Presse, September 17, 1996.


Taiwan Considering Freeze on Foreign Worker Permits

     Taiwan's Council for Economic Planning and Development on

August 15, 1996 asked the Council for Labor Affairs to freeze

new approvals for foreign workers at the current 280,000, due

to the increase in the unemployment rate to 2.6 percent, or

241,000 unemployed Taiwanese.  There are believed to be

200,000 illegal foreign workers in Taiwan.

     In response, the CLA drafted a set of regulations designed to

protect the rights and interests of foreign maids already in


     Under the new rules, foreign maids will be given one day off

every week, or overtime pay if they work on their day off.

They will also receive a seven-day paid vacation after one

year of employment.  The maids can apply for sick leave of up

to 30 days a year.

     Employers can require helpers to work for a 40-day trial

period.  If the employer deems them incompetent, foreigners

can be dismissed, and required to buy their own plane tickets

back home.  Foreign workers who commit crimes, violate

Taiwanese laws, marry in Taiwan or get pregnant, contract

contagious diseases, or bring families to Taiwan can also be


     Taiwan has about 30,000 foreign maids, most of whom are from

the Philippines.

     Taiwan is hoping to improve the marriage prospects for

Taiwanese women by reducing the number of foreign brides

entering the county.  Taiwanese men are said to prefer

foreign brides because Taiwanese women, who are better

educated and more affluent, expect too much from their


     Under the new quotas, only 360 women from Indonesia, 420 from

Myanmar, and 1,080 from China can enter Taiwan for marriage

each year.  A quota will soon be imposed on Vietnamese women.

There is no quota for Western spouses.

     "CLA drafts rules to 'Protect' foreign domestic helpers

here," China Economic News Service, August 16, 1996.  Annie

Huang, "Taiwan Moves to Boost Women's Marriage Prospects,

"Associated Press, August 30, 1996.




Saudi Arabia and Kuwait:  Reduce Dependence on


     In Saudi Arabia, where six of seven service workers are

foreigners, the government has hired foreign firms to teach

young Saudis desirable work traits such as punctuality,

reliability, and courtesy and is trying to persuade employers

to hire Saudis by prohibiting the admission of foreign


     The government also requires firms to increase the number of

Saudis in their work forces by five percent each year.

On the supply side of the labor market, the government is

offering native youth up to $190 per week to attend one-year

courses designed to turn them into desirable service workers.

The Deputy Labor Minister says that "Every job filled by a

foreigner is considered a temporary job to be filled by a

Saudi whenever it is possible."  Many employers reportedly

prefer foreigners because they work for $500 per month, and

they can be deported if fired, versus $1,000 per month

expected by Saudis.

     When Iraq invaded Kuwait in August 1990, there were about

650,000 Kuwaiti citizens and 1.4 million foreign workers in

Kuwait.  The war reduced the number of foreign workers to

about 700,000.

     After seven-month occupation by Iraq ended, the Kuwaiti

government expelled 700,000 Palestinian, Jordanian, and

Yemeni guest workers in a bid for self-reliance.  However, by

1992, newspapers were reporting that foreigners once again

dominated the labor force, this time Egyptians, Iranians and


     Today, Kuwait finds itself as reliant on foreign workers as

before--six of seven workers is a foreigners.  Egyptians,

Pakistanis, Filipinos and others fill jobs that the

Palestinians left behind.  Most foreigners are in Kuwait

without their families, and many work six days each week.

Kuwaitis comprise just 16 percent of the workforce.  Each

Kuwaiti is guaranteed a job, and 93 percent are government

employees.  Kuwaiti wages are double those paid to

foreigners, and many leave their jobs at lunch.  As a early

half of the government's expenses go to government salaries

compared to one-third to defense.

     Today, Kuwait's population is two million, 1.3 million of

whom are non-Kuwaitis, according to the most recent

government statistics.  Of a total labor force of 1.1

million, only 176,000 are Kuwaiti citizens. Kuwait has a per capita

income of $23,000, and an estimated 10 percent of the

world's oil reserves.

     There are 720,000 Kuwaiti citizens, but only 107,000 can

vote--only men who can trace their ancestry back at least one

generation are allowed to vote.  In September, there were

demonstrators by Kuwaiti women demanding the right to vote.

Kuwait has reduced the number of  "bidoon" or stateless

residents, from 117,000 to 220,000 since the Gulf War.  Most

are of Iranian or Iraqi origin and some have lived in Kuwait

for generations.  The government does not plan to grant them

citizenship, and has purged many bidoon from the Kuwaiti


     Kuwait plans to build an electric fence along its 130-mile

border with Iraq.

     Douglas Jehl, "For Kuwaitis, Self-Reliance Proves an Elusive

Goal," New York Times, September 24, 1996.  "Manila reports

Saudi Arabia continues to be Mecca for workers," Deutsche

Presse-Agentur, September 21, 1996.  Daniel Pearl, "Certain

Work Is Foreign to Saudis, But That's Changing," Wall Street

Journal, September 12, 1996.  Peter Waldman, "Foreigners

sweat to build Kuwait, as citizens flex only financial

muscle," Wall Street Journal, May 28, 1992.


Immigration into Argentina

     Argentina (36 million population) is a magnet for migrants

from Bolivia (seven million), Peru (24 million) and Paraguay

(five million).

     Argentina has an estimated 200,000 illegal immigrants, and

the debate over what to do about illegal immigrants sounds

very familiar to Americans.  There are those who say that,

with a 2,500-mile western border which has 795 crossing

points, Argentina cannot stop illegal immigrants, and that

Argentineans do not want to do certain types of jobs.

The Bermejo River that separates Argentina ($8,200 per capita

GNP) and Bolivia ($900 per capita GNP) has been likened to

the Rio Grande.  Bolivians have long been Argentina's migrant

workers, cutting sugar cane and picking oranges in the

northern provinces, and working their way south to vineyards

in the wine country and potato farms near Buenos Aires.  More

recently, Bolivians have found jobs picking apples in the

flatlands near Patagonia, replacing Chileans.

     Some Argentineans complain of the "Bolivianization" of

northern Argentina.

     The countries of Argentina, Brazil, Uruguay, Paraguay, Chile

and soon Bolivia are linked in a free-trade area, and there

is a long-standing tradition that allows the free transit

over borders of residents living within 30 miles of the


     Some estimates put the number of illegal Bolivians in

Argentina at 200,000.  Many are in Buenos Aries, where

Korean-owned textile factories hire illegal Bolivian and

Paraguayan workers for as little as $300 a month for a 60-

hour week.

     Argentina in July had a 17 percent unemployment rate, which

has led the government to step up the enforcement of

immigration laws.  One requirement, that tourists from

neighboring countries show they have at least $1,500, has

spawned a new business--the lending of $1,500 by the hour so

that Bolivians and Peruvians can enter Argentina.

     Argentina in 1991 had five percent foreign-born residents,

down sharply from 1914, when one-third of Argentina's

residents were born abroad--40 percent of the foreign born

were from Italy, and 35 percent from Spain.

     In Peru, unemployment is eight percent, and underemployment

is 75 to 90 percent.  About 20 percent of Peruvians live in

"critical poverty."

     Gabriel Escobar, "Free Trade Leads to Mobile Labor as

Bolivians Seek Jobs in Argentina," Washington Post, September

15 1996.  Sebastian Rotella, "Argentina's frontier of

promise; a country shaped by European settlers sees its

future in new immigrants from its impoverished Latin American

neighbors," Los Angeles Times, June 8, 1996. Felix Raucana,

"Peru's war on poverty stalls; for the 55 percent facing hard

times, the emergency handouts and aid programs have failed,"

Chicago Tribune, June 7, 1996.


100,000 Immigrants to Australia

     The number of immigrants arriving in Australia rose to 99,139

in the fiscal year ending June 30, 1996.  The three leading

countries of origin were New Zealand 12.4 percent, Britain

11.4 percent, and China 11.3 percent.  Included were 13,800


     The government plans to reduce immigration to 74,000 in 1996-

97, in part by introducing a "cap and queue" system that may

require spouses to wait for permission to immigrate to join

their husbands in Australia.  Under current law, an unlimited

number of spouses can enter Australia.  In 1996-97, there are

expected to be about 50,000 requests for family unification

visas, although the "quota" is 36,700.

     In 1995-96, there was a 30 per cent increase in applications

for spouse visas from Asian countries, especially from the

spouses of the 40,000 Chinese granted refugee  status in

Australia after the crackdown in June 1989.  Immigrants

entering Australia on spouse visas receive a two-year

probationary residence status.

     The Australian government plans to propose legislation that

would permit the deportation of immigrants and naturalized

Australians who lie about their qualifications or falsely

describe their marital status in their application for

permanent residency.  Under current law, permanent residents

can become naturalized Australians after two years.

     In her maiden speech to Australia's Federal Parliament, an

independent MP on September 10, 1996 invoked the name Arthur

Calwell, a former Labor Party leader remembered for his

words: "Two Wongs don't make a White," when she asserted that

Asian immigrants "have their own culture and religion, form

ghettoes and do not assimilate."

     According to the MP, Australia is danger of being "swamped"

by Asians.  She urged Australia to reinstate the White

Australia policy, and end its mult-cultural policies.

A survey of 1,800 Australians found that 63 percent believe

immigration should be reduced, including 51 percent of

foreign-born persons in the country.  Others studies suggest

that immigrants from some countries were experiencing long-

term unemployment.

     Australian Minister for Immigration Philip Ruddock said that

the MP's comments "reflect a degree of xenophobia we think is

very unhelpful."

     Some seven to eight percent of Australia's 20 million people

are of Asian descent.

     Some 28,670 people emigrated from Australia in the fiscal

year ending June 30, 1996.

     Researchers interested in immigration and integration in

Australia can vote to approve a new group to discuss these

issues.  If you wish to vote, voting information can be

obtained at http://www.dataweb.nl/~bekissler/index.html

Kevin Clarke, "Australian MP rattles racist skeleton,"

Business Times, September 26, 1996.  Kalinga Seneviratne,

"Look to Asia policy takes a different turn," Inter Press

Service, September 24, 1996.  Liam Fitzpatrick, "Immigration

laws set to hit spouses," South China Morning Post, September

22, 1996.




Slate on Immigration

     The Internet magazine Slate--http://www.slate.com/COC/96-08-

19/CoC.asp--hosted a discussion of immigration and poverty

August 19-23, 1995, in which Mark Krikorian asserted that US

immigration policy is the major factor harming poor Americans

that the US government can control--globalization, technology

etc. are more difficult for governments to control.  Several

studies suggest that immigration accounts for 30 to 50

percent of the increase in the wage gap between the richest

and poorest Americans.

     George Borjas asserted that, between 1970 and 1990, the

percentage of foreign-born persons with below-poverty level

incomes rose from 14 to 18 percent, while the percentage of

native-born persons with below-poverty level incomes remained

at 13 percent.  According to Borjas, the rise in immigrant

poverty is due to the growing gap between the education

levels of immigrants and natives--in 1970, recent immigrant

men had about one-half year of schooling than US-born men,

but by 1990, the education gap had widened to 1.3 years.

     Borjas argued that the arrival of more unskilled immigrants

held down wages for unskilled natives, and increased the

number of poor persons getting welfare benefits, especially

in-kind benefits such as Food Stamps--in 1990, 21 percent of

immigrant households receive some type of public assistance,

as compared to only 14 percent of native households, and only

about 10 percent of non-Hispanic white native households.

Barry Chiswick noted that, by one measure, immigration is

only one-third as great today as at the turn of the century.

Between 1871 to 1920, the annual rate of immigration was

about eight per thousand U.S. population, in contrast to a

rate of about three per thousand US population in the last 15

years.  Without immigration, Chiswick asserts, there would

have been more income equality, and more rural-urban


     Peter Skerry agreed that unskilled immigrants depress wages

and add to the US poverty population, but that public desires

to reduce immigration are as much due to the "unprecedented,

demands" of immigrants for bilingual education or ballots,

voting rights electoral districts, or affirmative action

benefits.  According to Skerry, the major issue is how

immigrants are incorporated into US society, not their

number.  Skerry also believes that the US must do far more to

reduce illegal immigration.

     Sanford Ungar agreed that the US is importing poverty with

immigration, but he argued that immigrants willing to work

hard are not a problem because they begin their American

journey poor.  Ungar argues that the immigration debate is

being manipulated by politicians who are blaming immigrants

for widespread economic insecurity and uncertainty.  Ungar

advocates more immigration, raising legal immigration and

admitting guest workers, and the provision of health and

education services to them.

     The panelists also considered the effects of increased

imports and increased immigration, noting that immigration is

a long-term increased in the labor supply.  Moderator Herb

Stein concluded that all panelists agreed that the US was

importing poverty via immigration, and that most agreed that

more resources needed to be devoted to reducing illegal


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