International Day of Family Remittances
International Day of Family Remittances (IDFR)
The International Day of Family Remittances (IDFR) is observed on 16 June each year. The day recognizes the contribution of over 200 million migrant workers to improve the lives of their 800 million family members back home, and to create a future of hope for their children.
Through this Day, the United Nations aim at bringing greater awareness on the impact that these contributions have on millions of households, but also on communities, countries, and entire regions. It also calls upon governments, private sector entities, and the civil society to find ways that can maximize the impact of remittances through individual, and collective actions.
The IDFR is fully recognized at global level, and included as one of the key initiatives to implement the newly-adopted Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration (Objective 20), also calling for the reduction of remittance transfer costs, and greater financial inclusion through remittances. The Day is also functional to the pursuit of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Remittance families are typically both resourceful and resilient in the face of difficult circumstances and changing conditions. But COVID-19 is disrupting an entire system that directly involves 200 million migrant workers, half of them women, around the world and their 800 million family members back home.
Migrant workers are essential contributors to both the places where they currently live and to their communities back home, having a ripple effect in about 40 sending and more than 125 receiving countries world-wide. Global remittances to developing countries are projected to fall by US$ 110 billion in 2020, and not return to pre-pandemic levels for many years thereafter.
Now, more than ever, the IDFR observance presents an invaluable opportunity to recognize the key role family remittances play on the wellbeing of millions of families and on the sustainable development of their local communities. That is why this year´s IDFR is calling upon governments, the private sector, and civil society organizations to support migrant workers and their families in building resilience at this time of crisis..
IDFR Facts and figures
Facts and figures
- The vast contribution that remittances can make to the achievement of the SDGs is clear: before the crisis, the projected sum of money in international remittances to be sent to developing countries between 2015 and 2030, was US$6.5 trillion.
- Family remittances have a direct impact on the lives of 1 billion people – one out of seven individuals on earth. Added together, remittances are three times greater than Official Development Assistance and surpass Foreign Direct Investment.
- In 2019, there were approximately 200 million migrant workers providing essential services to important economic sectors in more than 40 high income countries, and sending needed financial resources to support an estimated 800 million relatives living back home in more than 125 countries. Almost half of those families live in rural areas, where remittances “count the most.”
- The full impact of this pandemic remains unknown. However, lessons learned from the global reaction to the events of 2008 and 2001 point towards a dramatic reduction in the more than US$500 billion in family remittances sent home annually.
- For the first time, both sides of remittance corridors have been impacted simultaneously, likely pushing millions of families below poverty lines resulting in food insecurity and other challenges in the small towns and villages of developing countries.
- Beyond these enormous aggregate numbers, and their societal consequences, lies the most important number of all— the US $200 or US $300 monthly remittance, the financial measure of affection and commitment that generates on average over 60% of household income, and allows tens of millions of families to reach for their own individual SDGs.