BEIRUT: The World Bank projected the inflows of expatriates' remittances to Lebanon at $7.9 billion in 2017, an increase of 3.3 percent from last year, according to the LTW economic publication of Byblos Bank.
Lebanon This Week reported that the World Bank revised the 2016 remittances upward to $7.6 billion.
The expected 2017 figures would make Lebanon the 17th largest recipient of remittances globally and the 12th largest recipient among developing economies for the year.
Also, it would be the third largest recipient of remittances among 51 upper middle-income countries (UMICs) after China ($62.85 bn) and Mexico ($30.5 bn), and the second largest among 16 Arab countries, behind only Egypt ($18.2 bn).
Globally, Lebanon would receive less remittances than Italy ($9.48bn), Guatemala ($8.68 bn), Indonesia ($8.66 bn), more inflows than Russia ($7.28 bn), Morocco ($7.1 bn), and Ukraine ($6.88 bn), the LTW Byblos Bank economic newsletter reported.
Further, Lebanon is expected to post the 10th largest growth rate in remittance inflows among the 15 largest recipients of remittances in developing economies this year. In comparison, the World Bank forecast remittance inflows to developing countries to grow by 4.8 percent, those to Arab countries to increase by 4.7 percent and inflows to UMICs to rise by 4.4 percent, in 2017.
Remittance inflows to Lebanon would account for 1.3 percent of the global flow of remittances for this year, unchanged from 2015 and 2016. They would also represent 1.7 percent of aggregate remittances to developing economies this year, relative to 1.8 percent and 1.7 percent in 2015 and 2016, respectively; while they would account for 15.5 percent of remittance inflows to Arab countries in 2017.
Representing the large contribution of Lebanese expatriates' to the local economy, World Bank figures report that remittances to Lebanon for this year would constitute the equivalent to 14.6 percent of GDP.
This is the 16th highest ratio in the world and among emerging markets, and the second highest ratio among Arab countries behind the West Bank & Gaza (14.9 percent of GDP).
The World Bank forecast remittance inflows to Arab countries at $50.8 billion in 2017 compared to inflows of $48.5 billion in 2016.
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