Colombia, Venezuela, Columbia discussed on The Brookings Cafeteria
Network studio by Danny Bahar a fellow in the global economy and Development Program at Brooklyn's Danny's here to share his interview with the Colombian government official official in charge of managing his government's response to the humanitarian crisis of Venezuelan refugees. Danny welcome back. Thank you fred. I'm glad to be here. I went back and I counted at only six times. That you've been on Brookings podcasts in the last three and a half years to talk about this issue so it's a continuing crisis can you remind listeners. How the crisis began in Venezuela well the crises are assault of twenty years of mismanagement in Venezuela from economic point of view and political crisis? That has really become much stronger. In the past four five years Venezuela now is going through so one of the worst humanitarian crisis hemisphere has seen. It's comparable really two countries on their going world. Conflict People Wade entirely. People are dying from preventable diseases that has resulted in a huge refugee crisis. Day largest refugee. Go ahead Murphy has seen in in a few months. It's going to be the largest ever in the past decades. Tell listeners who they're going to hear from your interview today I'll be talking to Mr Filippi. We also as a special advisor to the president of Colombia Uganda to the border between Venezuela Colombia meaning he really oversees and manages every aspect aspect of the government. And all the coordination between agencies in their response to the Venezuelan refugee crisis as of today Colombia's largest recipient of Venezuelan refugees and they we have at least one point five million Venezuelans that have arrived mostly in the past three or four years. Now I know your conversation with Mr Munoz covers a lot of ground about the crisis. Isis how it affects both his country of Colombia. How it affects Venezuela and all the various issues and ideas for solving the problem? But what's the most important thing that you want listeners to take takeaway from this interview that they're about to hear I think that when we look at Columbia and also other countries in the region but mostly Colombia. What is really interesting and fascinating is how in spite of being a developing country? That is struggling on its own in terms of the provision of public services their own society etc.. They're facing a refugee. Would you crisis. That is as I said before. One of the largest that a hemisphere has seen earned that the world has seen they still look at this in a positive way. There is an opportunity here for them. I'm to grow economically but also I'm moral responsibility given the guys that are between the two countries Venezuela Colombia the historic ties. So he's very different. We've seen in other parts of the world where usually countries are closing the doors to migrants and refugees the United States itself. It's the lowest level of admissions chance of refugees in its history yet. We see Columbia. That is if anything or opening their doors more and more when I want to thank you for bringing this interview to us and also also for your continued attention to an analysis of this very important issue. Thank you thank you fred. And now here's Dani Bihar with Felipe Munoz the adviser to the President President of Colombia for the Colombian Venezuelan Border High Philippi and welcome to the Brookings Cafeteria. Hainanese my pleasure to be here with you so Philippi. You are managing on behalf of the Colombian government one of the biggest crisis that the hemisphere has seen in the recent years and eastern Eastern on migration and refugee crisis. And as of now we know that there are at least four point five million Venezuelans that have fled in the past last four or five years. How many of them are in Columbia? Danny more than thirty three percent of the migrants that had fled Venezuela in the last three years are coming into Columbia and stay impair money way but until about one point five million yes. That's about one point. Five one point six million according to latest data provided by Columbia which is entity in charge of control of migration process in Colombia. But on top of that you have also the Colombian Colombian returnees. You have to remember that. So many years ago that a lot of Colombia's dad had fled to Venezuela you Internet conflict and now that are returning in the last tree years we calculate that we have received more than half a million Colombian returnees and Daddy. You have migrants in transit. Columbia Columbia is the main exit point for swell. And then the people that want to go to equip or to pay do unto other countries in South America Cross Columbia the last year we penalize the year with near one million Minnesota and that have grossed through Colombia to the other countries and to complete the picture are you have the pendulum or Sikwan migration around the border Jolson Columbia that audio. which are the two main CDs of the border? You have around their retail. Some people that cross-border every day just to get out remittances and to buy the most basic things that they can happen in Minnesota so they come to Columbia in the border they go back the end of the day or they stay there for a week day for today's they come to receive the vaccines means for decades to receive food. Even we have our Komo enough kitchens where they provide more than ten thousand meals per day to the people that just grows the bar. Their heels was to get a meal per day and also to buy food to buy medicines. This is a very complicated situation at the border. Well Columbia's Contra fifty million people almost fifty million people so these ver one point five to two million people that have joined the country in the past few years. That's more than two percent of the three eight percent now here to three percent. Those have been about these people. I mean I visited the border. Sometimes we've met there. We've talked about it here and the Brooklyn Cafeteria tells obeyed about the needs of these people have do. They come in need for health services used to they really have important. How many area needs we have recieving kilom- in the last ten years I think three waves of migration from an as well as the first way with Salmon or eight years ago when some people with so mony come to Columbus After dot some people from the oil industry arrived to Colombia about now the last two year that people are calling the most vulnerable people in the population. Initially the conditions. They held on these shows. Malnutrition of the Keats. The critical condition as the pregnant woman arrived in Colombia have created a very complicated system of the border to give you a recent statistics hospitals in Kuta at the border for for every Columbia born. You have treatments now then is one to three and of course you can imagine the complication in the capacity and the ability elitist just to cope with these kinds of migration by yes in the last two year. The conditioner more critical day by day as the processing business world is getting worse just in the health system location system of course we are receiving Maher born Noel population and just for our listeners. To know a little bit the geography of Colombo CDs like Kuta who are really in the border with Venezuela that have the largest crossing between the two countries or Mike Cowen Department. Apparently like what he'd had those are the places that have the biggest affluence of migrants and refugees. I think that in Goku or department which is northwestern their their share chair of Venezuelans in the population is huge. She's more than twenty percent at least in Google right now in Cairo dot you have to consider we have more than two thousand kilometers turn border but of course between seventy five eighty percent of the population cross for one point which is in Belarus idea. Then they had seen me L. E. Y.. Reach which is like a symbol for this process. And you can see in the pictures in the news is where the people cross the most Bat yes today. We have thirty three percent of the migrants on the border CDs. We have the sixty seven percent all over the country. This is not anymore like Board their issue is a national nationally shoe but of course in relative terms you still have a municipality border where the population had grown between twelve to thirty seven percent and then of course you can imagine that we have at least ten money's politics that are in really really complicated problems in terms of their probation of their social services and you're talking about hospitals and schools in those areas. And we're GONNA get to that because I want to talk about the funding that you receive cope with this crisis but One question that I have that I think that you phases. Everyday's that Colombia is different than all the other countries that are also receiving a lot of these migrants not only because it's the largest recipient but also because because Minnesota has the largest trading partner of Columbia historically. We've reading a lot about him. People already know how Venezuela was actually the richest country in the region in the nineteen seventies and eighties and a little bit development of Columbia Wes things to its trade and relations with Venezuela. So you have a situation now where not only you have a huge inflow love microns. That might be putting some pressure on labor markets in the short term. But you also have another huge challenge. People don't talk about that much. Which is that they've been? Islamic collapsed collapsed and the moment that Economy collapsed all the particularly the bordering towns. That leave that of Trade Venezuela they just don't have any more economic activity so that also significantly effects that they do you see that in your dachshund your day today. Yes is really interesting because you have to remember that. Between Colombia Edits Walea. We have reached points of core Marissa bilateral commerce around seven billion dollars eight ten years ago. And now he's Soltero Masahiro then of course you have conc- There all day CDs along the border especially Cou could be are on these CDs in Northampton Sunday which is the state where to locate it. Of course have sulphur these economic collapse because they maintain a lot of commercial connections and and of course the crisis of the border began before their migration crisis but of course when you receive on top of this economic condition or new situation. These ample in men's amount of people. Of course you're crisis going deeper. But of course the crisis begun well before when Chavez decided just goes to cut off all the commerce between two nations which is so sad right and of course it has play a big tall milissa say to Venezuela yes. Yes no of of course because it's the same. The state of the Border Suli Untouchable Montaigne a very intense commerce relation. How long this history so Phillipi born in racing Venezuelan? That's also one of the reasons that I hear Brookings Right so much about it. And I also work on migration economically and when you were born born and raised Venezuela you always are surrounded by the thought that Colombia's our sister country right then it's one on Colombia Venezuela Colombia's best friend Columbus space friend. And I think that now we're seeing that and I want to get your thoughts on these important because what Columbia is definitely as we said the largest recipient of these migration and refugee crisis but migrants are going to other places to better one other larger recipients. Brazil means becoming an important Morton won some people leaving Goto cheerier Tina but Columbia by far stays the largest recipient and not only that a lot of the people that go to a quadrupedal they actually traveled through Columbia. Yet we've seen something that I think is a sad development that some countries in the region Bedroo- Ecuador Chile. They have imposed some visa restrictions in an effort to regulate flows the his birthday clarity difficult situation because a lot of these migrants. Don't have passports because it's hard to get aspirin minutes. It's very expensive luxury to have because there's no material and it involves a lot of corruption and so on yet Columbia has stayed open Columbia continues. The policy of open borders of course regulated with the rule of law. But he has never thought that at some point these too much for us. We're GONNA impose visas. We're GONNA close order other wise that I think there are three main reasons. The first one is dead. We have any story responsibility here. Remember that more then three million Colombians leaving Venezuela for so many years and they have their economic opportunities. They form their families. So is there and now we have like this story responsibility just to to have the embarrassed situation that the renaissance coming. But secondly and I think the most important Cortana this is an ethical imperative. We have seen like the collapse of the ones the most richest nation and we have to hold them and and third. This is political decision. This decision leading by the president do can the government of Colombia dot along the government. Montaigne Bury A high-level pressure in diplomatic terms. Just for that chain Jim minutes on the same time we have to be. We open arms just to receive the people. They're not outgoing to Columbia. Just for two years they are going because there are capping for the more incredible conditions that you have seen in the reunion decades but also I have to say that because we need to see in these in Columbia Center paternity that's an economic opportunity medium-term we need to obtain to get advantage anti-bush about the demographic bottles because the people that are coming from is for a large Jon Benet Columbine people some of them have a lot of skills that we need to get advantage of this and at the same time that we continue to work titled The in the Humanitarian Process in tried to help the people in the most basic exit needs parallel to that we are working in an economic inclusion for migrants policy that we recently launch it. And maybe we can talk about that because I think that what people from the outside is that these huge amount of migrants and refugees they are in need of humanitarian assistance. Which is true? But there's another another part of the coin here. which is that you guys in? The government of Colombia have been putting forward a lot of programs to integrate them into the labor force to take advantage that Chen. I always say that what could make these huge migration and refugee wave an opportunity. Burden is a choice of public policy. So now that you guys have been working very strongly on that so Dell's alleviate about the biggest programs that you have and maybe the challenges that you're facing now now. We decided up till two luke. What are the main bottlenecks within public sector for people who obtain this bishop permit we regularize around six hundred thousand people in the last year and we will continue in the same path so these are people for research and it's Willens can't work in Colombia?.