RIYADH — Personal remittances by expatriates in Saudi Arabia recorded an increase of 2.79 percent, equivalent to about SR4.18 billion.
The remittances reached SR153.87 billion ($41.03 billion) during 2021, compared to SR149.69 billion ($39.92 billion) in 2020.
The value of money transferred by expatriates to their respective countries last year was the highest since 2015, when it had reached SR156.86 billion ($ 41.83 billion).
The increase in the value of remittances came despite a decline of 4.82 percent (SR37.5 billion) during the fourth quarter of 2021 while compared to SR39.45 billion in the fourth quarter of 2020.
Similarly, the value of remittance dropped to SR11.1 billion in December 2021, compared to SR13.4 billion in December 2020, a decrease of 17.3 percent.
Meanwhile, the remittances of Saudis recorded an increase of 34.8 percent reaching SR65.47 billion in 2021, compared to SR48.57 billion in 2020.
In its latest edition of the Migration and Development Brief report, the World Bank had predicted that remittances to low- and middle-income countries rose by 7.3 percent to $589 billion in 2021. The estimates that included in the report indicate that this return to growth is more robust than previous estimates and comes after a slight decrease in the volume of remittances that did not exceed 1.7 percent in 2020, despite the severe global recession caused by the outbreak of coronavirus pandemic which confirms the resilience of those flows in the face of shocks.
According to the World Bank, factors contributing to the strong growth of remittances are migrants’ determination to support their families in times of need, buoyed by economic recovery in Europe and the United States thanks to fiscal stimulus and employment support programs.
In the Gulf Cooperation Council states and Russia, higher oil prices and the resulting improvement in economic activity have contributed to an increase in the money transfer by expats to their countries as well as remittances by Saudis to foreign countries.
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