April remittances steady
Remittance flows inched up slightly in April, after suffering the first quarterly decline in eight quarters since the onset of the pandemic, according to new data from the Bank of Jamaica.
Jamaica received the bulk of the US$271 million in net remittances, mainly from the United States, United Kingdom, Canada and the Cayman Islands. These countries have significant numbers of migrant workers who send funds to family and friends in Jamaica.
The flows in April were up by US$1.9 million or 0.3 per cent year on year, but was well below the new average of around US$300 million monthly that has prevailed during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Remittances are gifts from relatives, friends or acquaintances, and is a top source of foreign exchange flows for Jamaica. They do not include transfers that relate to transactions for goods or services.
For the period January to March, net remittances totalled US$722 million, down 2.7 per cent year on year. But some of the ground lost was made up in April. The four months of remittances amounted to US$994 million, down by 1.9 per cent from US$1.01 billion a year earlier.
In 2021, Jamaica reported another historic year of remittances, which were estimated at US$3.5 billion.