National, Front Page

July remittances hit 14-month high

Published : 01 Aug 2022 09:37 PM

Bangladesh fetched record $2.10 billion remittances in July, the first month of the 2022-23 fiscal year, thanks to Eid-ul Azha festival when expatriate Bangladeshis send more money home than other time.

The figure is the highest in 14 months and 12 percent higher than the $1.87 billion remittance the country received in the same month of the previous FY.

Md Serajul Islam, Executive Director and spokesperson of Bangladesh Bank, said, “Eid-ul-Azha festival was celebrated in the country on July 10. The expatriates sent more money to their families to make necessary purchases including for buying sacrificial animals. That is why remittances increased in July.”

“The dollar rate has increased quite a bit in the last few months. The amount of incentive has been increased from 2 percent to 2.5 percent. Due to these reasons expatriates are now sending remittances through banking channels. That is why remittances are increasing,” he added.

Islam mentioned, “Increasing remittances was very necessary at this time. Import costs have started to come down due to various measures. Due to the increase in exports as well as remittances, we hope that the forex market will return to normal.”

After something like a stumbling block in the just-concluded fiscal year, the country's remittance inflows witnessed a solid start in the new fiscal year 2022-23, which is good news for the country, an official of Bangladesh Bank said.

Expatriates usually send more money before Eid festivals and send far less amount of money after the month of Eid festivals, but this time they are sending more money after festivals which is good for the country, they mentioned.

This trend will continue in the future and a new record will be created in this fiscal year, they added.

However, the remittance inflows stood at $21.03 billion in FY22, a decrease of 15 percent over the previous fiscal, according to Bangladesh Bank data.

Due to the high demand for dollars in the market, banks are providing more cash incentives to bring in remittances to the country which pushed the remittances up, a banker said.

He said remitters were now receiving around Tk 97.25 against each dollar based on the calculations of the existing exchange rate of the taka against the US dollar and a 2.5 percent incentive on the amount sent as a remittance.

The exchange rate of the taka stood at Tk 94.70 against a dollar on Monday.

However, 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. It was the highest amount in a single month of the current fiscal year.

However, 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.

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 fell again as expatriates sent $1.49 billion during the time.

On the other hand, the country’s migrants sent home $1.86 billion 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.