Despite worsening Covid-19 pandemic situation around the world, remittance inflow again showed a robust growth at the beginning of the new fiscal year.
In just four working days in new fiscal year, remittance inflow witnessed a rapid growth to stand at $555.24 million ahead of Eid festival.
On the other hand, remittance inflow in the country hit a record growth to stand at 24.77 billion for the first time in the fiscal year 2020-21.
Bangladeshi expatriates sent 36.10 percent or $6.57 billion more money in fiscal 2020-21 compared to the corresponding period a year ago, when it was $18.20 billion, Bangladesh Bank data show.
Experts said expatriates are sending money to their homes continuously despite the coronavirus pandemic as the government has provided various supports to the remitters including 2 percent additional cash incentive.
This will significantly increase the remittance inflow through legal channels and discourage the ‘hundi’ business, they said.
As a result, this remittance inflow is considered oxygen to the country’s economy, they added.
Recently, the expatriates have sent more money to meet higher family expenses including the treatment cost of coronavirus infection, which pushed remittance up this fiscal, economists said.
Former Bangladesh Bank governor Dr Atiur Rahman told the Bangladesh Post, "Expatriates are virtually providing oxygen to our economy despite they have faced many odds due to coronavirus pandemic."
He said the remittance inflow rapidly increased through official channels due to travel restrictions imposed by most of the countries in an effort to combat the Covid-19 pandemic alongside two percent cash incentive to remitters by the government.
Bankers said that expatriates had been sending more money than other time as the income of many of their families decreased due to the coronavirus.
On the other hand, many expatriates returned home permanently with their savings during the pandemic. It also helped boost remittance flow, they added.
They said that this was the highest yearly remittance received in the country’s history helping push foreign exchange reserves up to $46.43 billion recently. Definitely it is a very good news for us, they added.
Bangladeshi expatriates sent home $11.65 billion in FY11, $12.84 billion in FY12, $14.46 billion in FY13, $14.23 billion in FY14, $15.31 billion in FY15, $14.93 billion in FY16, $12.77 billion in FY17, $14.98 billion in FY18, in $16.41 billion in FY19 and $18.20 billion in FY20 respectively, Bangladesh Bank sources said.
More than 1.02 crore Bangladeshi expatriates are currently working in some 174 countries across the world, mostly in the Middle East.