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July 6th, 2006
I must have been asked this question about 4,000 times since I moved here. Odd as it may be, nobody seemed to know… until now. Finally, immigration has announced the figure. Of the 289,237 legal residents (foreigners) living in Costa Rica, only 8,400 are US Citizens.
I have very mixed reaction to this number. First, I thought it would be higher. MUCH higher. However, this low number also explains why so few banks and other institutions here in CR are equipped with English speaking employees or web sites in English to accomodate those English speaking (only) expatriates. There is simply not sufficient demand for these services.
Also interesting is that I constantly hear from the ex-pat community how proposing laws such as international taxation will kill the golden goose (implying that the Costa Rica economy is heavily influenced by Gringo spending, and if they do THAT, all the Gringos will leave thus doing irrepairable harm to the country).
Well CLEARLY, if that number is even CLOSE to being accurate, Costa Rica could do quite well even if every every Gringo packed his bags and moved tomorrow. With almost 5 million residents, the piddly 8,400 Gringos probably aren’t making much of an impact on Costa Rica’s GNP.
Other interesting goodies:
There are more Columbians living here legally than there are Gringos, a bit over 10,000 to our 8,400.
The vast majority of foreign legal residents living here are Nicaraguan, at about 200,000. Now their exit would have a profound effect on the economy or CR.
Just another one of those things that make you go hmmmm!
Filed under Costa Rica, Hmmm!, Immigration & Residency, Life in Costa Rica, Living in Costa Rica, Retire in Costa Rica | Comments (14)