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India retains its position as the world’s largest remittance recipient

Remittance inflow into India remains robust

India has retained its number position as the largest remittance receiving country in the world in 2021. However, Mexico has replaced China to take the second position while the latter has been now placed in the thirds slot, according to the World Bank’s latest Migration and Development Brief report. Pakistan and Bangladesh are also among the top remittance receiving countries.

India received remittances of over $89 billion in 2021 – an increase of 8 per cent compared to 2020 when the country got $82.73 billion. Though overall the remittance inflow has remained robust, the increase can also be partly attributed to the depreciation of the rupee.

Also read: Pakistan's inward remittances fall in January, causing more concerns for Imran Khan

The World Bank said that remittance flows to many Central Asian countries, for which the main source is Russia, will likely fall dramatically. These declines, combined with rising food, fertilizer, and oil prices, are likely to increase risks to food security and exacerbate poverty in many of these countries, it said.

Remittances to South Asia grew 6.9 per cent to $157 billion in 2021. Though large numbers of South Asian migrants returned to home countries as the pandemic broke out in early 2020, the availability of vaccines and opening of Gulf Cooperation Council economies enabled a gradual return to host countries in 2021, supporting larger remittance flows.