In a positive development, remittances posted their biggest jump in years for the month of July, rising by 25 per cent compared to the same month last year despite the raging uncertainty that prevailed in the run-up to the elections.
Pakistan received $19.6bn remittances in total in FY18 and have been on the uptick since January, but the July data sees the largest jump seen in years.
The increase appears to be broad based, with three countries – the USA, UK and UAE – showing double digits growth.
The largest jumps were seen from the USA and UK, higher by 44pc and 39pc. Workers in the US sent $280.3 million while those in the UK sent $277.5 million compared to $193.7 million and $199.2 million respectively.
Remittances from UAE grew by 24pc to $65m in July FY19.
Remittances from the entire Middle East have witnessed an increase, including Saudi Arabia which has been showing decline for the last couple of years. Inflows from the kingdom increased 7% to $437.48 million in July FY2018/19. Earlier, remittances from Saudi Arabia were on decline. Fiscal consolidation and job nationalisation policies undertaken by the Saudi government restricted foreign labour demand in the kingdom, which also led to repatriation of a number of foreign workers to their home countries.