DHAKA, Sept. 25 (Xinhua) -- Bangladesh's remittance income from the United States in the 2011-12 fiscal year ending in June plunged but the inflow remained stable from another two top traditional foreign currency sending Gulf states, a bank official said Tuesday.
The Bangladesh Bank official who preferred to be unnamed said inflow of remittances from Bangladeshis in the U.S., the country's third-largest source of foreign currency after Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE), fell by about 19 percent year on year to 1.50 billion U.S. dollar in the 2011-12 fiscal year (July 2011-June 2012).
Remittance inflows fell from some non-Middle East countries in the wake of global economic meltdown which took toll on U.S. and some European economies, said the bank official.
He said both job opportunities and incomes of the non-resident Bangladeshis (NRBs) in the U.S. and some European countries squeezed over the last years due to the global recession.
As the inflow of remittances from traditional Middle East states remained stable, the official said Bangladesh witnessed a 10 percent growth in the income of one of the key sources of foreign exchange in the last fiscal year.
Quoting the latest data from the Bangladesh Bank, he said inflow of remittances by millions of NRBs in the 2011-12 fiscal year reached a record high of about 13 billion U.S. dollars, mainly thanks to Saudi Arabia and the UAE which host several millions of Bangladeshis.
According to the official, Bangladesh during the last fiscal year fetched its highest remittance of 3.68 billion U.S. dollars from Saudi Arabia, a growth of about 12 percent year on year.
The country also fetched 2.40 billion U.S. dollars from the UAE, up 20 percent on a yearly basis, followed by about 1.498 billion U. S. dollars from the U.S., 1.19 billion U.S. dollars from Kuwait and 987.46 million U.S. dollars from the United Kingdom.
Apart from these top five countries, Bangladesh's remittance earnings in the last fiscal year stood at 847.49 billion U.S. dollars from Malaysia, 400.93 million U.S. dollars from Oman, 335. 26 million U.S. dollars from Qatar, 311.46 million U.S. dollars from Singapore, 298.46 million U.S. dollars from Bahrain, 244.75 million U.S. dollars from Italy and 53.27 million U.S. dollars from Australia.
Officials hope that Bangladesh's remittance growth will again pick up a higher pace in the current 2012-13 fiscal year (July 2012-June 2013) as employment boom for millions of foreign job seekers in the remittance-reliant impoverished nation of about 153 million people had continued since January this year after years of slump due to recession.
Data from the country's Bureau of Manpower Employment and Training (BMET) show "some 374,837 Bangladeshis in January-June found overseas jobs, a rise of nearly 50 percent over the same period last year."
Of the total overseas employment in the first half of 2012, more than two-thirds of Bangladeshi workers found jobs in some Middle East countries including the UAE, according to the BMET.