World Bank Migration and Development Brief

The World Bank recently released its 37th Migration and Development Brief 2022 titled ‘Remittances Brave Global Headwinds, Special Focus: Climate Migration’.

What are the key findings of the report?

  • Remittances to low and middle income countries increased by nearly 5 per cent to around 626 billion USD in 2022.
  • This is less than 10.2 per cent increase in 2021. This growth is expected to slow further to around 2 per cent in 2023.
  • Remittances are key household income source for people in low and middle income countries. They play a major role in alleviating poverty and increasing resilience of these economies, while also boosting infant health and school enrolments.
  • Factors affecting the remittance flows in developing countries are:
  1. Reopening of economies after COVID-19 infections receded helped migrants gain more employment opportunities. However, high inflation adversely affected their real income.
  2. Appreciation of the rouble against the USD increased remittance flow from Russia to Central Asia
  3. In Europe, a weaker Euro reduced remittance flows into North Africa and other countries.
  4. In countries that witnessed scarcity of foreign exchange and multiple exchange rates, remittance flow declined as the flows shifted to alternative channels providing better rates.
  • The growth of remittances is expected to slow in 2023 because of expected recession in high-income countries and volatile oil prices and currency exchanges.
  • The top five countries to receive highest remittance inflow in 2022 are India, Mexico, China, the Philippines and Egypt.
  • Migrant workers from India had sent a record 100 billion USD in 2022 despite the economic challenges caused by energy inflation.
  • The report predicted a 12 per cent increase in remittance flow to India. The surge is attributed to wage hikes and a strong labour market in the United States and other OECD countries. The member countries of Gulf Cooperation Council ensured that the inflation is low through direct support methods, enabling the migrants to transfer money to their home countries.

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