Home MMBIZ News Bangladesh April Remittances Up for Third Straight Month

Bangladesh April Remittances Up for Third Straight Month

Money sent home by Bangladeshis working overseas in April rose 3.2 percent from a year earlier to $1.23 billion, the third straight month of gains.

Millions of expatriate Bangladeshis remitted $11.73 billion from July to April, the first 10 months of the current financial year, down nearly 4.8 percent from the same period the previous year, central bank data showed.

Officials say remittances have dropped over the last few months because of political turmoil in the months leading up to an election in January.

Fewer Bangladeshis are also going abroad to work as jobs have dried up in traditional markets such as in Middle Eastern countries.

Inflows of remittances turned positive in February – the first year-on-year increase since last August.

Strong remittances in recent years have helped build foreign exchange reserves that stood at an all-time high of $20.37 billion at the end of April.

In the first 10 months of the fiscal year, the central bank purchased nearly $4.2 billion from local commercial banks to stem an appreciation in the domestic currency.

Bangladesh received $14.46 billion in remittances in the 2012/13 fiscal year, up 12.6 percent from a year earlier.

Remittances from about 9 million citizens abroad are critical for the impoverished nation and are a key source of foreign exchange, alongside garment exports, which account for 80 percent of total export earnings of about $27 billion a year.

Bangladesh’s economic growth this financial year, however, is expected to be slower than the 6 percent in 2012/13, largely because of political unrest.  Reuters

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