• Wednesday, Dec 11, 2019
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July-Sept quarter: Bangladeshi expatriates in seven countries contribute two-thirds of remittances

  • Published at 08:50 pm December 18th, 2018
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File photo of people entering in Bangladesh Bank, situated in the Capital Mahmud Hossain Opu/Dhaka Tribune

Ministry of Expatriates' Welfare and Overseas Employment should find out what sort of manpower is needed in a particular country, and provide appropriate training, the PRI official said

Bangladeshi expatriates living in seven rich and industrialized countries contributed around two-thirds of remittances during the first quarter of the current fiscal year, exposing over-dependence of foreign currency on a few countries.

Remittances sent by Bangladeshi expatriates stood at$3.87 billion during the period, according to data of Bangladesh Bank (BB).

The amount was 14.09% higher than that of the same quarter in the last fiscal year.

According to BB data, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA), United Arab Emirates (UAE), the United States, Malaysia, Kuwait, Oman, and the United Kingdom contributed  around 75% remittance inflow into the country.

Speaking to the Dhaka Tribune, Ahsan H Mansur, executive director of the Policy Research Institute (PRI),said: “We are currently not sending any skilled manpower abroad. If we do send skilled workers to other countries, our remittance earnings will increase by a large margin.”

He added that the workers currently being sent abroad are absolutely unskilled.

“If we could send trained personnel abroad, we could also get more remittances from Hong Kong, Singapore, Japan and China,” explained Ahsan.

Ministry of Expatriates' Welfare and Overseas Employment should find out what sort of manpower is needed in a particular country, and provide appropriate training, the PRI official said.

According to BB, country-wise inflow of remittances during the July-September period this year shows that $726.82 million (18.79% of total remittances) was sent from the KSA, $606.92 million (15.69%) from the UAE; $446.2 million(11.54%) from the US; $317.13 million (8.20%) from Malaysia; $293.96 million (7.60%) from Kuwait; $261.48 million (6.76%) from Oman; and $254.92 million (6.59%) from the UK.

Region-wise inflow of remittances shows that 59.23% of the total amount was received from the Gulf countries during the July-September quarter of FY18,followed by EU countries with 11.76%, while Asia-Pacific countries contributed 10.45%, and other countries accounted for 7.15%.

Remittances are the second highest source of foreign currency earnings in Bangladesh, after exports of ready-made garments (RMG). However, remittances can be considered as the highest in terms of net earnings since—in the case of RMG exports—a significant portion of earnings is spent on importing raw materials, experts say.

Around 163,000 Bangladeshis went abroad looking for jobs during the first quarter of FY19—which was 13.1% lower than the previous quarter—according to BB data. 

Out of the163,000 people, 31.0% went to Malaysia; 26.1% went to KSA; 10.1% to Qatar; 9.7% to Oman; 7.2% to Singapore; 3.8% to Kuwait; 1.1% to Jordan; 0.7% to Lebanon; 0.5% to UAE; 0.1% to Bahrain; and 9.8% to other countries.