Remittance inflows witnessed an upward trend to stand at $836.20 million in the first 12 days in May as expatriates were sending more money to their family members, thanks to cash incentives and higher dollar price.
Eid-ul-Fitr was celebrated in the country on May 3. Expatriates sent a total of $2.09 billion remittance to the country in April ahead of Eid, the highest amount in a single month of the current fiscal year.
This important index of the economy increased last December and January after a decline for five consecutive months (July-November 2021). In December and January, remittance was $1.63 billion and $1.70 billion respectively.
In February, this inflow stumbled again as expatriates sent $1.49 billion during the time.
On the other hand, the country’s migrants sent $1.86 billion home in March ahead of Ramadan this year, which is 25 percent more than that in the previous month and also the highest in the past eight months.
Serajul Islam, Executive Director and also a spokesperson of Bangladesh Bank, said, “Incentives have encouraged migrant workers to send more money. Rising fuel prices have boosted the economies of Middle Eastern countries,
including Saudi Arabia. Expatriates have sent more money to their families in April ahead of Eid. There is another Eid festival (Eid-ul-Adha) ahead. As a result, remittances will increase in the coming days.”
Economists and bankers said that since the first day of the New Year, the government has increased the cash incentive for remittances from 2 percent to 2.5 percent.
“This has had a positive impact on this index,” they said, adding that more remittances are coming from the Middle East countries as the economy of the Middle East has recovered due to the increase in the price of fuel oil in the world market.
To increase the flow of remittances, the government was providing cash incentives at the rate of 2 percent from the fiscal year 2019-20. From 1 January 2022, it has been increased to 2.5 percent.
About 1.15 crore expatriates living in different countries play an important role in the country's economy by sending remittances. The contribution of remittances to the country’s GDP is about 12 percent.
The country received $22.07 billion in remittances in 2021, which was more than that in any other year in the history of Bangladesh. This inflow was $21.78 billion in 2020 and $18.33 billion in 2019.
According to data in the ministry, the government has already set up many training centres in different districts along with skills development programmes to create skilled job seekers.
The government encourages documented overseas employment, as an important component of earning foreign currency.
Bangladesh has become the 8th largest remittance-receiving country and the 6th largest migrant-sending country in the world, according to the World Migration Report 2022.
The government provided various training including diplomas in shipbuilding engineering, refrigeration and air-conditioning, general mechanics, electrical machine maintenance, auto CAD 2D and 3D, welding (6G), catering, masonry, Korean, Arabic, Cantonese, Japanese languages and others.
Earlier, the government declared the overseas employment sector as a “thrust sector” with maximum stress on further expanding job markets for the Bangladeshi job seekers abroad.