This paper explores the dynamics of remittances originating from the Netherlands into the local economy of the Tammenga District in Suriname. On the national level, these remittances flows amounted up to more than USD 150 million dollars in 2009, in relation to a population of nearly half a million. Compared to other capital flows in the economy this seems significant in terms of their magnitude. Moreover, remittances from the Netherlands have proven to constitute for more than 80 percent of Suriname’s total remittances. While previous research demonstrated that 47 percent of Surinamese households receive remittances. Against this background, it is to be expected that remittances are likely to have significant effects on households. This paper therefore looks at three dimensions of remittances; well-being of households, determinants of local economic development and dynamics of the sender’s perspective. The research employed the local economy of the district as a unit of analysis. Its assessment was built on an asset-vulnerability framework through which I have been able to trace the impact of received remittances on variables of human capital. In addition it explored the contribution on household’s asset status such as housing. Finally the instrument was used to trace the effects of remittances’ channels on enterprise creation. The research established that the private money flows to households in the study area are a critical channel of purchasing power and investment in human capital. Based on the fieldwork conducted in both Suriname and the Netherlands this research suggests that contrary to the contribution of remittances to household’s disposable income, its contribution to Local Economic Development (LED) is found insignificant. This indicates that remittances to the Tammenga District may not be intended to trigger determinants of LED. The specific findings have revealed a rather similar trend. Allocating money transfers for investment purposes is likely to be limited. In all these money flows from the Netherlands, remitters employ a variety of channels in sending remittances, both formal and informal. In turn the motives are considered to have a more altruistic than self-interest base.

Additional Metadata
Keywords Remittances, Households, Consumption smoothing, Productive investments, Entrepreneurship, Human capital, Vulnerability, Formal and informal channels
Thesis Advisor Berner, Erhard
Persistent URL
Series International Political Economy and Development (IPED)
Nahar, Chanel Vanessa. (2011, December 15). Remittances from the Netherlands: A case of local economic development in the Tammenga District in Suriname. International Political Economy and Development (IPED). Retrieved from