Global re­mit­tance flow crosses $406 bil­lion

In­dia tops the list of re­mit­tance re­cip­i­ents with $70 bil­lion

The Pak Banker - - Front Page -

DUBAI

Re­mit­tance flows to the de­vel­op­ing world are expected to ex­ceed ear­lier es­ti­mates and to­tal $406 bil­lion (Dh1.49 tril­lion) this year, an in­crease of 6.5 per cent over the pre­vi­ous year, the World Bank said in its lat­est re­port, re­leased on Wed­nes­day. “Re­mit­tances to de­vel­op­ing coun­tries are pro­jected to grow by 7.9 per cent in 2013, 10.1 per cent in 2014 and 10.7 per cent in 2015 to reach $534 bil­lion in 2015,” the re­port, Mi­gra­tion and De­vel­op­ment Brief, says.

When high-in­come coun­tries are in­cluded, world­wide re­mit­tances are expected to to­tal $534 bil­lion in 2012, and pro­jected to grow to $685 bil­lion in 2015, it said.

In­dia topped the list of the world’s big­gest re­mit­tance re­cip­i­ent coun­tries with $70 bil­lion, fol­lowed by China with $66 bil­lion, the Philippines and Mex­ico $24 bil­lion each, and Nige­ria $21 bil­lion. Other large re­cip­i­ents in­clude Egypt, Pak­istan, Bangladesh, Viet­nam, and Le­banon.

“How­ever, de­spite the growth in re­mit­tance flows over­all to de­vel­op­ing coun­tries, the con­tin­u­ing global eco­nomic cri­sis is damp­en­ing re­mit­tance flows to some re­gions, with Europe and Cen­tral Asia and Sub-Sa­ha­ran Africa es­pe­cially af­fected, while South Asia and the Mid­dle East and North Africa (Mena) are expected to fare much bet­ter than pre­vi­ously es­ti­mated,” it said.

More than 215 mil­lion peo­ple, or 3 per cent of the world’s pop­u­la­tion, live out­side their coun­tries of birth while over 700 mil­lion mi­grate within their coun­tries for so­cio-po­lit­i­cal and eco­nomic rea­sons. Re­mit­tances, the money sent home by mi­grants, are three times the size of of­fi­cial de­vel­op­ment as­sis­tance and they pro­vide an im­por­tant life­line for mil­lions of poor house­holds. Re­mit­tances to de­vel­op­ing coun­tries are es­ti­mated to reach $372 bil­lion in 2011.

“Al­though mi­grant work­ers are, to a large ex­tent, ad­versely af­fected by the slow growth in the global econ­omy, re­mit­tance vol­umes have re­mained re­mark­ably re­silient, pro­vid­ing a vi­tal life­line to not only poor fam­i­lies but a steady and re­li­able source of for­eign cur­rency in many poor re­mit­tances re­cip­i­ent coun­tries,” said Hans Tim­mer, Di­rec­tor of the Bank’s De­vel­op­ment Prospects Group.

Re­gions and coun­tries with large num­bers of mi­grants in oil ex­port­ing coun­tries continue to see ro­bust growth in in­ward re­mit­tance flows, com­pared with those whose mi­grant work­ers are largely con­cen­trated in the ad­vanced economies, es­pe­cially Western Europe.

Thus South Asia, Mena and East Asia and Pa­cific re­gions, with large num­bers of work­ers in the Gulf Co­op­er­a­tion Coun­cil (GCC) coun­tries, are see­ing bet­ter-than-expected growth in re­mit­tances. For South Asia, re­mit­tances in 2012 are expected to to­tal $109 bil­lion, an in­crease of 12.5 per cent over 2011; the East Asia and Pa­cific re­gion is es­ti­mated to at­tract $114 bil­lion, an in­crease of 7.2 per cent over 2011; while Mena is expected to re­ceive $47 bil­lion, an in­crease of 8.4 per cent over the pre­vi­ous year.

Re­mit­tances help de­vel­op­ing coun­tries to boost up for­eign ex­change re­serves that help them meet their bal­ance of pay­ment re­quire­ments es­pe­cially when ex­ports fall.

Re­mit­tances to Latin Amer­ica and the Caribbean are sup­ported by a re­cov­er­ing econ­omy and an im­prov­ing labour mar­ket in the United States.

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