Thursday, January 17, 2008

Foreign Remittances by Pakistanis Rising

Overseas Pakistanis sent home over $3B during July-December 2007 period. This is up 19.4% over the same period last year, according to a report in Business Recorder, Pakistan's financial daily newspaper. The biggest inflows came from the US with $874m followed by Saudi Arabia with $563m, UAE with $500m, GCC countries with $457m, UK with $227m and EU with $89m. The remittances to Pakistan are rising at twice the overall rate of remittances from developed to developing countries.
These remittances also compare favorably with the foreign direct investment of $1.87B in Pakistan in the first half of 2007 which increased by 67% over the same period in 2006.
In addition to these inflows, Pakistan earns about $18B a year through exports and receives another $750m annually in US aid.
While good economic policies by Pakistani government have inspired confidence among investors and the business community, these additional inflows have clearly helped in achieving about 7% annual growth with rising incomes and the growing middle class clout in Pakistan.
Let's hope that this economic growth continues in spite the current political turmoil to give people hope in the long term for better lives under a true, non-feudal and enlightened democracy.

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