Despite the impact of covid-19 on global economies, remittances to Ghana shot up by 5% to US$3.6 billion last year, according to World Bank’s 2021 Migration and Development report.
With the exception of Nigeria where there was a significant decline in remittances, foreign inflows to Africa went up by 2.3%.
According to the report, Ghana was ranked second behind Africa’s most populous nation, benefiting significantly from remittance flows last year.
“Remittance flows to the region were estimated to have declined by 12.5% in 2020. The decline was almost entirely due to a 27.7% decline in remittance flows to Nigeria, which alone accounted for over 40% of remittance flows to the region.”
“Excluding Nigeria, remittance flows to Sub-Saharan African increased by 2.3 percent, demonstrating resilience at a time of crisis. Indeed, strong remittance growth was reported in Zambia (37%), Mozambique (16%), Kenya (9%), and Ghana (5%)”, the report added.
There are hundreds of thousands of Ghanaians residing in the United States, United Kingdom, Germany and France who remit funds regularly to their families, love ones and relations in the country.
During the covid-19 pandemic, where most of these economies were lockdown for greater periods of months, Ghanaians in the diaspora were not perturbed, but continued to send monies to their families and friends back home in Ghana.
Importantly, the country benefited from the remittance flows as its contribution to Gross Domestic Product was reasonable.
Banks were also not left out as their commissions from the remittances were expected to have gone up.
Nonetheless, the report said remittance flows to the region were affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, in particular by restricted mobility measures and the employment situation in the main host countries. Ghana was however not much affected as remittances to urban and rural areas went up slightly.
Top remittance recipients in Sub-Saharan Africa in 2020 (US$)