Sri Lanka gets most remittances from Kuwait UAE and Qatar in 3Q 2023
By: Staff Writer
Colombo (LNW): Sri Lanka has received the largest volume of remittances from countries which face long-lasting labour shortages, followed by those with a 2.0 percent inflation target, official data shows.
Workers’ remittances have increased notably to US$ 482.4 million in September 2023 in comparison to USD 359.3 million in September 2022, according to the quarterly bulletin of Worker Remittances and Labour Migration, Issued by the Economic Research Department of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka.
“Total workers’ remittances in 2023 up to September amounted to US$ 4,345.1 million and the highest amount of remittances was received from Kuwait followed by UAE and Qatar in the third quarter of 2023”, it noted.
Meanwhile, $100.4 million received through other countries and USD 287.2 mn received through some of the Global remittance channels, Apps and other channels are not included in country-wise workers’ remittances.
Remittances from the United States and the United Kingdom mainly include remittances diverted from other source countries through the United States and the United Kingdom, which is a part of the mechanism of cross border forex transactions arrangements.
Th$ 507 million during the third quarter of 2023, compared to a monthly average of $470 million in the second quarter of 2023.”
“Total departures for foreign employment amounted to 224,133 up to September of 2023 recording a monthly average of 24,904. Total monthly departures were high throughout the first three quarters of 2023.
Although departures for foreign employment are higher, passport issuances showed some decline compared to 2022 in the third quarter of 2023.”
“Migrant workers as a percentage of total departures of Sri Lankans were relative ely low in the first nine months of 2023, compared to corresponding period of 2022. Female departures for foreign employment are highly concentrated on semi-skilled category, while male departures are concentrated on skilled category.
Nearly 59% of departures for foreign employment is concentrated in the semi-skilled and low-skilled categories,” it stated.
Sri Lanka has received 157.7 million US dollars from Kuwait in the third quarter, followed by UAE with 146.9 million US dollars, Qatar 137.5 million US dollars and Saudi Arabia 134.3 million US dollars, according to central bank data.
Without a true policy rate, and somewhat limited standing facilities, the countries have very low interest rates and lower levels of banking crises even when the anchor currency nation, the US, has banking collapses from activist monetary policy.
After Saudi Arabia, the US was the next highest source of remittances at 132.4 million US dollars.
The United Kingdom came next with 102.6 million US dollars, followed by South Korea and Italy. All three countries have 2.0 percent inflation targets, limiting the room for central banks to print money.
Maldives came next with 32.5 million US dollars.The Maldives also has a pegged regime, with less credibility than Saudi Arabia or the UAE, triggering forex shortages from time to time.