The Economic Bulletin of the Maldives Monetary Authority (MMA) for the fourth quarter of last year was published recently which indicates that a total of USD 92.9 million – approximately MVR 1.43 billion – flowed out of Maldives as remittance.
When compared to 2019, this is an increase by 24%. However, whereas cash flow out of the country in the third quarter was extremely high, a 43% reduction was observed in the fourth quarter. Consequent to the huge amount of migrant workers living in the Maldives that are from Bangladesh, 44% of the remitted amount was directed to the said country whereas 19% was directed towards India – also due to the large number of Indian migrant workers living in the Maldives.
In comparison to outflow, the inflow of remittance stood at just a mere USD 12.8 million with 18% being the highest coming in from the United Arab Emirates.
In 2020, MMA and all the major banks operating in the Maldives took several precautionary measures in managing the flow of foreign currency in the country as the main source of foreign income – the tourism sector – was impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic such as imposing strict limitations on the amount of USD being used abroad through cards.