International Day of Family Remittances, Keynote Address by Gilbert F. Houngbo President of IFAD
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International Day of Family Remittances, Keynote Address by Gilbert F. Houngbo President of IFAD16 June 2022
Today’s International Day of Family Remittances is a tribute to the world’s 200 million migrant workers, and their abiding commitment to their family members back home.
Despite the many recent crises, this year US$605 billion dollars in remittances reached around 800 million people in to over 130 low- and middle-income countries.
Remittances have now resumed their annual growth rates.
But this is not a cause for celebration. It only highlights the commitment of migrants in times of crisis, coupled with the dire economic realities their families face. These family resources are an essential lifeline.
Nowhere is this more obvious than in rural areas of low- and middle-income countries were remittances count the most. In these places remittances can make the difference between having food security, education, and economic activity, or being trapped in ever deeper poverty.
The recent International Review of the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration, highlighted the positive impact of migrants’ adopting of digital transfers, financial inclusion practices -- combined with more responsive measures from the private sector and governments alike.
However, the review also noted that much more needs to be done.
At IFAD, we are relentlessly working to promote effective solutions for remittance families. We are leading the private sector engagement to stimulate innovative and scalable business solutions that address rural market realities. By linking remittances to financial products -- such as savings, credit and insurance -- we expect to see the creation and growth of small businesses, and an increase in the ability of poor rural people to adapt to climate risks and ultimately increase their prospects for a better and sustainable future.
We also need to support governments and regulators more to unlock the socioeconomic benefits of remittances and to better leverage these funds.
Let us learn from the world’s one billion remittance family members and gather our joint resources to help them maximize the impact of the US$5.4 trillion dollars in remittances due to be sent by 2030.
By supporting remittance families with more options to use their funds, we are also supporting local communities, businesses and job creation for women, youth and future generations.
At IFAD, we have seen that working with remittances families can transform lives and rural communities. We call upon you to join us in using remittances to meet the Sustainable Development Goals.