remains the largest recipient of global remittances in the world,
receiving $69 billion in 2012, the World Bank said Friday as it
launched a new initiative on migration issues.
Envisioned as a global hub of knowledge and policy expertise on
migration issues, the Global Knowledge Partnership on Migration
and Development (KNOMAD), was initiated in response to the rapid
growth in migration and remittances over the last decade, it said.
In addition to large numbers of unskilled migrants working mainly
in the oil-rich Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries, India
also has a large skilled diaspora in the US and other high-income
countries, the Bank noted.
Flows to Bangladesh, Pakistan and Nepal have also been robust,
helped by strong economic growth in the GCC and India, it said.
Officially recorded remittance flows to South Asia are estimated
to have increased sharply by 12.8 percent to $109 billion in 2012.
This follows growth averaging 13.8 percent in each of the previous
Remittances to the region are projected to remain buoyant in the
coming years, reaching $140 billion in 2015, the Bank said.
Other top recipients of officially recorded remittances for 2012
are China ($60 billion), the Philippines ($24 billion), Mexico
($23 billion) and Nigeria and Egypt ($21 billion each). Other
large recipients include Pakistan, Bangladesh, Vietnam, and
"Nearly one billion people - that is, one out of every seven
persons on the planet - have migrated internally and across
international borders in search of better opportunities and living
conditions, with profound implications for development," the Bank
Remittance flows to developing countries have more than quadrupled
since 2000, it said. Global remittances, including those to
high-income countries, are estimated to have reached $514 billion
in 2012, compared to $132 billion in 2000.
"Migration and remittances offer a vital lifeline for millions of
people and can play a major role in an economy's take-off," said
Kaushik Basu, the World Bank's chief economist and senior vice
president for development economics.
"The World Bank has played a critical role in migration and
remittance research and KNOMAD will be critical in taking this
agenda forward," he said.
(Arun Kumar can be contacted at email@example.com)