Outward UAE remittances top Dh42.55bn in the second quarter of 2019

India received the most from expatriates in the UAE between April and June this year

Total remittances from the UAE declined by 4.2 per cent in Q2 2019, compared with the same period a year earlier. Pawan Singh / The National

Outward personal remittances from the UAE totalled Dh42.55 billion in the second quarter of this year, according to Central Bank of the UAE data, with India ranking as the top beneficiary.

During April to June, total remittances from the UAE declined by 4.2 per cent from the same period a year earlier. The central bank data reflects transfers by expatriates as well as personal transfers by Emiratis.

“The slowdown in outward personal remittances is in line with the slowdown in employment,” the central bank said in its second quarter review on Sunday.

The UAE is one of the largest outbound remitter countries in the world, with outward personal remittances reaching Dh169.2bn in 2018, 3 per cent more than the previous year, according to the central bank’s May annual report.

India was the top-receiving country for earnings made by migrants in the second quarter of this year, the central bank said, comprising 37.2 per cent of total remittances in that period.

“This high share is in accordance with the significant share of expats from India working in the UAE,” the banking regulator said.  "According to the latest (January 2019) UAE population statistics published by the Global Media Insight, 59.5 per cent of the expat population in the UAE originate from South Asian countries, and expats from India account for 27.5 per cent of the total expat population in the UAE.”

Pakistan trailed India, with beneficiaries receiving 10.5 per cent of total remittances, followed by the Philippines at 7.2 per cent, Egypt at 6.3 per cent, and the UK with 3.8 per cent, according to the central bank data. The UK has experienced a surge in remittances from the UAE in recent months, as residents look to cash in on the falling pound amid Brexit turmoil.

Making up the rest of the top 10 remittance beneficiaries from the UAE was Bangladesh, the United States, Jordan, Switzerland and China.

The global cost of sending $200 (Dh735)  in the first quarter of 2019 cost about 7 per cent of the amount sent, according to the World Bank.

The organisation expects remittance flows to low- and middle-income countries to reach $550 billion this year, to become their largest source of external financing.