Sending Cash Home to Eastern Europe, Central Asia

Many newly liberated/orphaned economies of Eastern Europe and Central Asia are now depending more and more on remittances from their citizens working abroad, like so many Pacific Island countries whose economies are based on MIRAB (PDF): MIgration, Remittances, Aid, and Bureacracy.

The largest amount of remittances, as a share of GDP, was sent to Moldova.

The study, using data from 2004, indicated that money sent there by migrants was equivalent to 27% of GDP, an estimated 705 million US dollars. Bosnia and Herzegovina (21%; $1.83bn), Albania (16%; $1.16bn) and Armenia (9%; $336m) were among the larger recipients.

Russia attracted migrants from other parts of the former Soviet Union, while poorer Central Asian workers were drawn to countries such as resource-rich Kazakhstan….

About 80% of Bulgarians and 62% of Romanians said they were not sending cash back to their home countries while working abroad….

While the report focused on the ECA nations, the Bank said that Tonga was the nation which had the largest level of remittance income as a proportion of GDP.

In pure monetary value, the latest World Bank figures show that India was the largest recipient of remittances, with about 22 billion US dollars being sent home in 2005. China and Mexico were also at the top end of the table.

In that year, total remittances globally topped 230 billion US dollars of which developing countries received 167 billion, more than twice the level of development aid from all sources.

via Colby Cosh

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Filed under Central Asia, Eastern Europe, economics

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