Key Figures

Venezuelans in Central America & Mexico
Costa Rica 29,405
Mexico 113,108
Panama 58,158
05 Aug 2023
People in Need 2023
PiN Blanco
Costa Rica 159.5K
México 219K
Panamá 360.6K
13 Mar 2023
Target Population 2023
Target Blanco
Costa Rica 14.4K
México 50K
Panamá 111.6K
13 Mar 2023
Financial requirements 2023
Requerimientos financieros
Costa Rica 10,37M
México 16,36M
Panamá 21,34M
13 Mar 2023
Partners RMRP
Costa Rica 5
México 7
Panamá 15
13 Mar 2023

Sub-Regional Overview

The Sub-region, comprising the three countries of Panama, Costa Rica, and Mexico, has seen a significant increase in arrivals of refugees and migrants since late 2021 and throughout 2022, including a majority of Venezuelans, many of whom previously resided in other host countries. In the first nine months of the year, some 151,582 refugees and migrants had irregularly crossed the perilous route through the Darien Gap, marking the border between Colombia and Panama, among them 148,285 Venezuelans.236 Visa restrictions in place in all countries of Central America and Mexico, and the inability of most refugees and migrants to meet corresponding requirements due to a lack of financial means and documentation,237 have increased their reliance on irregular land routes and the services of smugglers. 

Policy changes by the United States announced on 12 October 2022238 heavily impacted these movements flows in the Sub-region and are expected to further impact irregular movement trends and corresponding protection space in Central America and Mexico, including in 2023. Unable to pursue their northbound journeys, thousands of refugees and migrants were stranded in the countries of Central America and Mexico, many subsequently seeking to regularize their situations through asylum and migratory pathways, others seeking to go back to previous host countries in the region, and some engaging in collective and/or selforganized return movements to their country of origin. This evolving situation will characterize much of the R4V response in affected countries (also in countries beyond the Sub-region) and is likely to translate into refugees and migrants increasingly considering the countries of the Sub-region as destination locations, where partners will adjust their response programming to evolving needs.239

As reflected in the RMNA, the significant increase in the number of refugees and migrants reaching countries of the Sub-region has created strains on national response capacities (including health, shelter, social protection, education, and legal assistance), particularly at a time when the Sub-region is still recovering from the COVID-19 pandemic and coping with a global economic downturn. Strained response capacities of host communities resulted in challenges for newly arriving refugees and migrants to access adequate shelter, health, and education services as well as protection and legal assistance.


Document image
Mixed Migration Centre (MMC) - Access to information before and during the journey among refugees and migrants in Costa Rica

This infographic presents data on access to information among refugees and migrants heading north, interviewed in Costa Rica. It aims to contribute towards a solid evidence base to inform targeted responses on the ground, as well as advocacy efforts related to the situation of refugees and migrants in the region.

22 December 2022
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Regional Contacts

Janine Hutchison Helene Songe

R4V Platform Videos

Resumen del lanzamiento del Plan Regional de Respuesta para Refugiados y Migrantes 2023-2024

La Plataforma R4V lanzó el Plan Regional de Respuesta para Refugiados y Migrantes 2023-2024 (RMRP) multianual para apoyar las necesidades actuales de 3,41 millones de personas refugiadas y migrantes de Venezuela y las comunidades de acogida afectadas

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Años después del inicio de la emergencia, las personas venezolanas siguen viviendo en la incertidumbre, desplazándose por rutas peligrosas y sin necesidades básicas, como la alimentación y el alojamiento, cubiertas.