Remittances Up 11.6% Jan-June

By Mario Andree | Published: 2:10 AM Aug 2 2021

By Mario Andree

Sri Lanka’s largest foreign exchange earner, Worker remittances, increased 11.6 per cent during the first six months of this year as migrant workers sent home US$ 3.32 billion compared to US$ 2.98 billion a year ago.

After accelerating for 11 consecutive months up to May this year, worker remittances slipped during Junethis year, as migrant workers sent home US$ 478.4 million, down 16.4 per cent compared to US$ 572.5 million sent during the same month of last year.

In May this year, migrant workers sent home US$ 460 million, up 6.7 per cent compared to US$ 431 million sent a year ago. 

In April this year, migrant workers sent home US$ 518 million, up 38.1 per cent compared to 375 million a year earlier. 

In March this year, migrant workers sent home US$ 612 million, up 24.4 per cent compared to US$ 492 million sent a year ago. 

In February this year, migrant workers sent home US$ 579.7 million, up 10 per cent compared to US$ 527.3 million sent a year ago. 

In January this year, migrant workers sent home US$ 675.3 million, up 16 per cent compared to US$ 581 million sent a year ago. 

Last year, worker remittances to Sri Lanka improved 5.8 per cent to US$ 7.1 billion from US$ 6.7 billion recorded in 2019. 

Worker remittances, measured in rupee terms, increased 14.1 per cent during the first six month of this year to Rs 630 billion from Rs 552 billion a year ago.  Worker remittances have been Sri Lanka’s largest foreign exchange earner and the country’s balance of payment has been highly dependent on the income generated by migrant workers. Last year, many Sri Lankans working overseas returned to the country following the COVID-19 pandemic, which shattered the global economy. 

The sector is also one of the largest employment providers to address national unemployment and poverty issues prevailing in the country. However, Sri Lanka has been witnessing a declining trend in the number of departures for foreign employment over the last few years.


By Mario Andree | Published: 2:10 AM Aug 2 2021

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