Pakistan’s remittances rise to record $23 billion
Pakistan received a record $23 billion in remittances during the July 2019 to June 20 despite the Covid-19 shock to the global economy in Jan- June 2020 period, the latest data released by the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) showed on Tuesday.
“Workers’ remittances rose by a significant 50.7 percent during June 2020 to reach record high $2.466 billion compared with $1.636bn in June 2019. Similarly, on a cumulative basis, workers’ remittances increased to a historic high level of $23.120bn during FY20, witnessing a growth of 6.4pc over $21.739bn during FY19,” the central bank said in a press release.
The press release further said that “it would also be pertinent to mention here that inflow of workers’ remittances registered an increase of 7.8pc during March-June 2020 pandemic period compared with the corresponding period of 2019.”
Meanwhile, the major inflows during the month of June came from Saudi Arabia at $619.4 million, USA $452.0m, UAE $431.7m and UK$401.0m recording an increase of 42pc , 7.1pc, 33.5pc and 40.8pc respectively as compared to May.
The SBP further said that the significant increase in remittances during June can be attributed to a number of factors. Since many of the countries eased lockdown in June, overseas Pakistanis were able to transfer accumulative funds, which they were unable to send earlier.
Further, it is also believed that they sent remittances to support extended families and friends due to Covid-19.
In addition to these, the Government and SBP also played their role in increasing inflow of workers’ remittances during FY20 in general and Covid-19 period, March till June , in particular.
Supportive government policies in terms of extension of Reimbursement of TT Charges Scheme (Free Send Remittance Scheme) to small remitters by reducing threshold from $200 to $100, as well as, broadening the scope of incentive scheme for marketing scheme for financial institutions increased the incentives for sending remittances through regular channels.