Migrant remittances top $350bn: World Bank

Posted at 12/03/2011 7:41 AM

GENEVA - Migrant workers from developing countries will have sent home more than $350 billion in remittances by the end of this year, a World Bank report said Friday.

The figure tops $400 billion for 2011 if money sent to high-income countries is included, said the report, released during the fifth meeting of the Global Forum on Migration and Development in Geneva.
 
The top recipients of officially recorded remittances were India, which took in $58 billion, followed by China ($57 billion), Mexico ($24 billion) and the Philippines ($23 billion).
 
Other top beneficiaries were Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nigeria, Vietnam, Egypt and Lebanon.
 
"Despite the global economic crisis... remittance flows to developing countries have remained resilient, posting an estimated growth of 8 percent in 2011," said Hans Timmer, director of the bank’s Development Prospects Group.
 
"Remittance flows to all developing regions have grown this year, for the first time since the financial crisis."
 
The World Bank expects a 7.3 percent rise in such payments in 2012 and a 7.9 percent increase in 2013.
 
The two-day Global Forum meeting -- attended by 160 nations and 30 groups -- was opened Thursday by Swiss minister Simonetta Sommaruga, who called for stronger international collaboration in asylum policy.
 
The body was set up in 2006 by then UN secretary general Kofi Annan to strengthen cooperation between migrants' countries of origin, transit and destination.