Remittances exceed $2 billion for eighth straight month

Published in Dawn, February 15, 2021

Remittances from Pakistani workers employed abroad exceeded $2 billion for the eighth straight month in January at $2.3 billion, up 19 per cent from a year earlier, the country’s central bank said on Monday.

Sharing the figures on Twitter, Prime Minister Imran Khan thanked overseas Pakistanis.

“This is a record for our country, and I thank our overseas Pakistanis,” he said.

 

The sustained increase in remittances largely reflects the growing use of banking channels that is attributed to continued efforts by the government and the central bank to attract inflows through official channels, the State Bank of Pakistan said in a statement.

Limited cross-border travel due to a second wave of coronavirus pandemic, and a flexible exchange rate regime also boosted remittances, it added.

Travel restrictions and introduction of digital apps for transferring money are the main reasons behind higher remittances among others, Samiullah Tariq, head of research and development at Pakistan Kuwait Investment Company, told Reuters.

According to the SBP, a large part of the remittances during the July to January period in FY21 was sourced from Saudi Arabia ($4.5bn), United Arab Emirates ($3.4bn), United Kingdom ($2.2bn) and United States ($1.4bn).

Information Minister Shibli Faraz said the sustained increase in remittances was a “clear indication that overseas Pakistanis trust the transparent leadership of PM Imran Khan”.

 

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