Kenya received $10.74 billion from its citizens living abroad between 2013 and 2018, topping the East African region as the biggest beneficiary of diaspora remittances; this is according to the latest World Bank brief.
Uganda South Sudan Tanzania Rwanda and Burundi received ($6.28 billion) ($2.85 billion), ($2.39 billion), ($1.13 billion) ($257 million) respectively.
Generally, the East African countries recorded an increase of remittances by more than 60 percent to $4.66 billion in 2018, from $2.84 billion in 2013.
However, according to the EAC trade report (2017), the flows of direct investment into East Africa decreased by 25.3 percent to $6.6 a drop by 60.6 percent with an exception Burundi and Rwanda whose FDI increased by $80.9 and $599.9 million respectively.
India retained its position as the world’s top recipient of remittances in 2018 with Indian diaspora sending home $79 billion.
“In 2018, remittance flows to low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) reached $529 billion, an increase of 9.6 percent over 2017. Remittance flows grew in all six regions, particularly in South Asia (12.3 percent) and Europe and Central Asia (11.2 percent),” the world bank report stated.
The growth of remittance in the low and middle-income countries was attributed to a stronger economy and employment situation in the United States and a rebound in outward flows from some Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries and the Russian Federation.
The World Bank report further predicted that in 2019, annual remittance flows to low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) are likely to reach $550 billion.