New York: India was the largest remittance-receiving country in the world, with migrant workers from the country sending home USD 69 billion in 2017, according to a report which said remittances to the Asia-Pacific region amounted to US 256 billion last year. The report ‘RemitSCOPE – Remittance markets and opportunities – Asia and the Pacific’ said India (USD 69 billion), China (USD 64 billion) and the Philippines (USD 33 billion) are the three largest remittance-receiving countries in the world in 2017. Pakistan (USD 20 billion), and Vietnam (USD 14 billion) are also in the top 10.
About 70 per cent of remittances sent to Asia and the Pacific come from outside the region and in particular from the Gulf States (32 per cent), North America (26 per cent) and Europe (12 per cent). By 2030, around USD 6 trillion in remittances are expected to be sent to developing countries by 2030: over half of these flows will arrive in the Asia Pacific regions, very often in small towns and villages.
Last year, migrant workers sent USD 256 billion to their families in the Asia-Pacific region, the report released by the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) said. The remittances represented 53 per cent of flows worldwide, growing 4.87 per cent since 2008, with rates flattening in recent years. Remittance outflows from the region amount to USD 78 billion, and 93 per cent of the flows remain in the region.
Remittances are particularly crucial in rural areas where poverty is the highest. Worldwide, an estimated 40 percent of the total value of remittances go to rural areas. However, in the Asia- Pacific region, remittances go disproportionally to countries with a majority of rural populations such as Nepal (81 per cent), India (67 per cent), Vietnam (66 per cent), Bangladesh (65 per cent), Pakistan (61 per cent) and the Philippines (56 per cent). Remittances to rural areas are generally costlier due to expenses associated with offering access points in distant locations.