MFW4A Joins Call to Action on the Impact of COVID-19 on Remittances

Jun 16, 2020 | MFW4A News

The International Day of Family Remittances (IDFR) is a universally-recognized observance adopted by the United Nations General Assembly and celebrated every year on 16 June. The day recognizes and raises global awareness of critical contributions that over 200 million migrants make around the world for the wellbeing of their 800 million family members back home. Africa account for a growing portion of the global remittance flows, which more than quadrupled in the last decade, reaching $US 85 billion in 2018.

While remittances are typically resilient in the face of difficult circumstances and changing conditions, the COVID-19 pandemic has taken a heavy toll on the flows this year. According to the World Bank, it is expected that global remittances will experience its sharpest decline ever seen, falling by 20 percent in 2020 to US$ 445 billion. A sharp decline in remittance flows to households threatens decade of progress made on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). For many African countries, the macroeconomic impact on remittance-dependent countries is likely to be significant.

To help tackle the challenge COVID-19 poses on remittances, Making Finance Work for Africa, together with 37 other organizations, joined a Remittance Community Taskforce (RCTF), led by the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), to develop a coordinated and concerted effort to raise awareness of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on remittance families. The taskforce released a Blueprint for Action preliminary report that showcases the immediate and short-term recommendations to be considered by public authorities, the private sector and civil society as part of their collective efforts to address the impact of COVID-19 on the remittance sector.

By taking specific concrete actions outlined in the blueprint, it is the hope the concerned stakeholders will heed to the call and facilitate faster, cheaper and safer remittances even during this unprecedented crisis.