ISLAMABAD: Government is eyeing more than $22 billion in remittances during the current fiscal year of 2019/20 as growing emigration of workforce is expected to offset a potential slowdown in gulf economies due to oil fall.
The finance ministry on Wednesday said remittances reached to $15.1 billion in the first eight months of the current fiscal year, up 5.4 percent year-on-year.
“Due to this increasing trend in remittances, the remittances will exceed $22 billion at the end of FY2020,” the ministry said in a statement. “Moreover, seasonal effect also plays major role in boosting remittances. It is also expected that with the start of Ramadan and Eid, the flow of remittances will increase as workers generally send more money during festivals.” The finance ministry said export of manpower increased to 491,854 in the July-February period compared to 284,047 a year earlier. Around 73 percent of additional workers or 207,807 are based in Saudi Arabia, UAE and Oman.
“Present government has improved its diplomatic relations with gulf states which helped to restore the confidence of foreign employers on Pakistani workforce,” it added.
The finance ministry advised a thorough analysis of trends in global labour markets to determine the demand pattern of skill. “Prospective emigrants should be trained for proficiency in such trades/ professions,” it said.
In FY2019, remittances amounted to $21.8 billion, up 10 percent year-on-year and showing a rise of $640 million compared with the annual target.
Ministry of Overseas Pakistanis and Human Resource Development was advised to coordinate with the National Vocational and Technical Training Centre and technical education and vocational training authorities to develop curriculum for capacity building of young labour and execute training course accordingly.
“Diplomatic training institutes must properly train labour attachés,” the finance ministry said. “A properly structured generic training module for them needs to be developed. It should include cultural practices and norms, administrative setup, labour laws, and basic language skills.”