ADB expects global remittances to fall by over US$100 bln due to COVID-19

Tuesday, 2020-08-04 10:38:39
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The global economy could lose US$108.6 billion in remittances due to the COVID-19 pandemic fallout, according to a report released by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) on August 3.

The report said that, under a worst-case scenario, where the COVID-19 economic impact persists throughout the year and dissipates halfway in the last three months of the outbreak, global remittances will fall by US$108.6 billion in 2020, equivalent to an 18.3 percent decline from what would have been expected without the impact of COVID-19.

According to the report, remittance receipts in Asia and the Pacific would fall by US$54.3 billion, equivalent to 19.8 percent of remittances in 2018.

"The majority of the decline in remittance flows to the region is explained by a US$22.5 billion fall in remittances from the Middle East, which accounts for 41.4 percent of the total remittance loss in Asia," the report added.

"This is followed by a US$20.5 billion slump in remittances from the United States (37.9 percent of total)," the report said.

The report said the fall in remittances from the EU and the United Kingdom accounts for 6.3 percent of the total, or US$3.4 billion.

The report said the decline from Russia amounts to US$2.1 billion, of which US$2 billion reflects the decline in remittances going to Central Asia.

"By percentage, the Middle East and Russia experienced the sharpest decline - over a third - primarily reflecting the effects of low demand and oil prices on remittances," the report said.

The report said governments need to act fast to protect the most vulnerable in society from this loss of vital income.