KHATMANDU: Remittance growth has plummeted heavily to an average of 4.93 per cent in last fiscal as compared to 17.11 per cent of the fiscal 2015-16. According to Nepal Rastra Bank (NRB) data, remittance inflow in the country stood at Rs 695.45 billion in fiscal 2016-17 as compared to Rs 665.06 billion of fiscal 2015-16. In fiscal 2014-15, the country had recorded remittance inflow of Rs 617.28 billion.
Global oil price shocks and drop in outflow of migrant workers caused slowdown in remittance growth. At the same time, depreciation of the US dollar against Indian currency is another reason behind low growth of remittances in terms of Nepali rupee, as it is pegged with the Indian currency.
The negative growth rate of 2.5 per cent in the first month of fiscal 2016-17 moved towards positive territory from the second month. Remittance growth had nosedived since last quadrimester of fiscal 2015-16 and growth rate of remittance in last fiscal remained low when the shrunk base of the last quadrimester is taken into account.
The NRB data show that remittance growth declined steeply after reaching the monthly highest rate of 7.8 per cent in the fourth month of last fiscal to land at 4.6 per cent in the last month.
Remittance growth slowed down since the end of fiscal 2015-16 basically due to steep fall in oil prices that hit the economic activities in the Gulf-countries, which are the major source of remittances. Along with economic slowdown in the Gulf, employment opportunities for foreign job-seekers also declined.