Statistics and DWH Department of State Bank of Pakistan released Workers’ Remittance from across the world yesterday. The remittances declined 9.1% from last month’s receipts. The numbers were in continuous fall since August last year but they saw an increase in March this year. The numbers have been coming at time when Pakistan’s exports are in a downfall and current account is widening every month.
This year’s total Foreign Remittances were $ 1538.61 million which was $155.76 million less than the previous month’s figures of $1694.37 million. The numbers are disappointing in the manner that Pakistan’s economy has been heavily reliant on these remittances to help bridge the deficit gap.
But over the past year the situation has worsened in the wake of low oil prices in the GCC countries. GCC countries have been a second home to Pakistan’s workers. Taxi Drivers, Construction Workers, Bankers etc have always been opting for GCC countries due to scarce opportunities in the Pakistani economy. But due to a rise in conservative political and economic policies across the world, the workers are having difficulty getting jobs abroad.
About only recently, KSA sent Pakistani workers back home due to non availability of jobs in KSA. The situation worsened after prices of oil in international markets have been falling and demand for crude oil weakened. These economic and political changes have made the countries to find alternate avenues of economic activities.
Workers’ Remittances are the third most important source of capital for economic growth in Pakistan. In the absence of healthy remittances, it is highly likely that exchange rate, monetary and fiscal policy would come under great pressure.