KATHMANDU: Average per day remittance inflow went up to Rs 2.10 billion in the one-month period between April 14 to May 14, as Nepalis working abroad sent home additional money in the wake of the disaster.
Average per day remittance inflow stood at Rs 1.58 billion in the days prior to the earthquake.
With these flows, total remittance income of the country increased by 10 per cent to Rs 489.07 billion in the first 10 months of the current fiscal year, shows the latest Macroeconomic Report of Nepal Rastra Bank. In the same period last fiscal, remittance inflow had gone up by 29.7 per cent to Rs 444.48 billion.
A 10-per-cent hike in remittance income helped the country’s foreign exchange reserve to grow by 10.2 per cent to $7.65 billion in the 10-month period. In terms of Nepali rupee, the foreign exchange reserve swelled by 17.4 per cent to Rs 781.33 billion.
A decent hike in remittance income also helped the country post a current account surplus of Rs 71.38 billion in the first 10 months of the fiscal.
However, the current account surplus of the 10-month period was lower than Rs 78.03 billion recorded in the same period of last fiscal.
The current account surplus fell moderately in the first 10 months of this fiscal, as trade deficit widened by 10 per cent to Rs 557.13 billion in the review period.
Trade deficit widened because of discrepancy in imports and exports.
In the 10-month period, merchandise imports grew by 8.1 per cent to Rs 628.11 billion. The import growth in the first 10 months, however, was lower than the import growth of 26.7 per cent recorded in the same period of last fiscal.
“The import growth remained low mainly due to decline in the price of petroleum products and fall in imports of gold, betel nut, coal and crude soybean oil, among others,” says the report.
While imports went up by 8.1 per cent, merchandise exports dropped 5.5 per cent to Rs 70.98 billion in the 10-month period. Exports had jumped 18.6 per cent to Rs 75.12 billion in the same period last fiscal.
Despite fall in exports, the overall balance of payments (BoP) recorded a surplus of Rs 101.15 billion in first 10 months of the current fiscal year. However, BoP surplus recorded in the 10-month period was lower than Rs 115.26 billion recorded in the same period last fiscal.
The BoP surplus stood at a healthy level despite drop in exports and moderate growth in remittance income because of a 63.6 per cent jump in foreign direct investment (FDI). The country received FDI of Rs 3.14 billion in the review period, as against Rs 1.92 billion in the same period of last fiscal.