GUATEMALA

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GENERAL DATA

Poverty rate:

59.3%

out of the total population

MIGRATION DATA

  • Sending country: about 1.2 million Guatemalans, or 7% of the population, reside abroad mainly in the US (89%), Mexico (4%), and Belize (2%). 

  • Destination country: around 95,000 immigrants or 0.64% of the total population live in Guatemala. The main countries of origin are El Salvador (24.50%), Mexico (22.39%), and the US (11.03%).

  • Transit country: Honduran and Salvadoran migrants, and to a lesser extent Nicaraguan migrants, and migrants from Caribbean, South American, Asian, and African countries transit Guatemala en route to the US. From October 2019 to March 2020, it was estimated that some 45,000 migrants in transit crossed the country towards the northern border with Mexico. 

  • Host country for refugees: 390 is the number of registered refugees in Guatemala as of October 2018.

IMPACT BY COVID-19

Hover over the country where you want to know the data.

* daily data update

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STATE MEASURES

  • On Wednesday, September 30, 2020, hundreds of migrants of Honduran origin set out for the border with Guatemala. This caravan advances only two weeks after Guatemala reopened its borders, after keeping them closed for months to stop the spread of covid-19.

  • Several governments in the region announced that they were watching the situation: Mexico’s immigration agency said in a statement that it would enforce “safe, orderly, and legal” migration and that it would do nothing to promote the formation of a migrant caravan.

  • The Honduran ambassador to Guatemala, Mario Fortín, told journalists that that neighboring country is demanding laboratory PCR tests to guarantee that foreigners are not infected with Covid-19.

  • The United States Embassy in Honduras assured that migration to the United States was more difficult than ever at this time and more dangerous due to Covid-19. But the push factors that drive migrants from Central America have not diminished during the pandemic.

  • On October 1, 2020, more than a thousand Honduran migrants participated in a caravan that entered Guatemala irregularly. However, on October 4, 2020, Honduran Vice Foreign Minister Nelly Jerez mentioned that 1,043 migrants returned, representing 83% of the people who left in the caravan. Jerez also pointed out that the returnees “are being transferred to their places of origin by the Honduran authorities.”

  • For his part, Guatemalan President Alejandro Giammattei assured that he repatriated 3,384 migrants from Honduras and that the Guatemalan security forces were able to "contain" the migratory exodus that, according to the president, was a factor in the spread of COVID-19.

  • On December 10, 2020, Honduran National Police personnel carried out an operation to verify negative PCR tests for Covid-19. The operation did not allow the caravan to advance. This is the same caravan that left San Pedro Sula for the United States the day before. The operation was located three kilometers from the border with Guatemala, specifically in Aguas Calientes.

*For more detail go to the digital archive that we created: