Remittance inflows are witnessing rapid growth with expatriates sending more money to their families ahead of the upcoming Eid.
Remittance inflow has increased to stand at $1.40 billion in the first 21 days in April 2022 because of the raised cash incentive to remittance senders.
This important index of the economy increased in last December and January after declining for five consecutive months (July-November 2021).
In December and January, remittance was $1.63 billion and $1.70 billion respectively.
Last 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 in the previous month and also the highest in the past eight months.
Serajul Islam, executive director and spokesperson of Bangladesh Bank, told Bangladesh Post, “More remittances are expected in the remaining days of Eid. As such, remittances could reach about $2.25 billion in April.”
During Ramadan and Eid, people spend extra on some essential purchases, he said, adding “sending extra money to the family for that extra purchase”. Eid shopping has already started in the markets of the country including in Dhaka. People require extra money for Eid shopping. That is why remittances are increasing.”
Islam said, “Incentives have increased. Rising fuel prices have boosted the economies of Middle Eastern countries, including Saudi Arabia. There are two Eid festivals 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 effect 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 January 1, 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 jobseekers.
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 diploma in ship building 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.