Jha, Shikha Sugiyarto, Guntur Vargas-Silva, Carlos
Year of Publication:
ADB Economics Working Paper Series 185
Remittances to Asia plunged during the 1997 Asian financial crisis, but the drop was temporary as the flows were increasing once again after just 1 year. The current crisis, however, is fundamentally different in that even the countries that send remittances have been adversely affected. The global nature of this crisis raises several questions such as whether it will also last for a short time or developing Asia should prepare for a long period of remittance stagnation. This study examines remittances data to several Asian countries to shed light on such issues. The results suggest that while remittance flows to key recipients in the region have slowed down in the current year, there has not been a sharp drop. Furthermore, there is no indication that the remittance flows will slow down further, suggesting that the flows should be back on a higher growth path in a few years. It is unlikely, however, to see the same growth rates of the past, given that an important share of that growth during the last two decades was due to better recording of remittances and an increased use of wire transfers on the part of migrants.