Remittances by non-resident Indians (NRIs) saw a 27 per cent jump at $ 6.5 billion (Rs 39,991.9 crore in present valuations) between January and September this year, as against 7 per cent growth during the same period last year.
UAE Exchange, the Abu Dhabi-based money transfer firm which manages 10 per cent of the total remittances in India, has witnessed a sharp increase in the money flow in September.
The festive season is expected to boost the flows even further. “We have seen a sharp spike in remittances, as expatriates took advantage of record low levels on the rupee,” said Promoth Manghat, vice-president, global operations, UAE Exchange.
Festivals such as Eid, Onam, Diwali and Christmas fall in the period between September and December. RBI’s special window to attract dollar deposit flows, valid till November 30, has also led to high foreign currency remittances.
Strengthening of the US dollar against most other currencies, particularly the Indian rupee, is another key driver. “The festive season will also add at least 10-12 per cent to the spurt in global transaction volumes to India, which we expect to touch a record $8.5 billion in 2013. This will increase our market share further to 12 per cent of the total remittance volume of $71 billion into the country, as estimated by the World Bank.”
Average transaction volume has risen by about 27 per cent this year and average transaction size has risen by 7 per cent. Kerala’s remittance revenue has touched Rs 75,000 crore, surpassing its annual target in the first six months of the year.
The state contributes the largest share of remittance flows, with 33 per cent of total volumes, to UAE Exchange.
UAE Exchange has the largest network of branches with 700 outlets in 30 countries. It plans to take the number to 1,000 in the next three years.