NAIROBI, Kenya March 19 – Kenyans living abroad sent home 36.7 billion shillings in February, down 5.1% from the 38.7 billion shillings sent in January 2022.
According to the latest weekly bulletin from the Central Bank of Kenya (CBK), the decline is in line with seasonal factors.
In a similar month last year, total remittances amounted to $260.3 million (29.7 billion shillings), an increase of 23.5%, meaning that Kenyans abroad sent more money this year.
“Cumulative inflows for the 12 months to February 2022 totaled $3,840 million (439.14 billion shillings) compared to $3,155 million (356.2 billion shillings) during the same period in 2021 , an increase of 21.7%,” the CBK said.
The United States remains the largest source of remittances to Kenya, accounting for 58% in February 2022.
Other important source markets include the UK, Germany and Canada.
Gulf States such as Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Bahrain have also become important drivers of remittances, in line with the growing number of Kenyans immigrating to these countries in search of employment.
Remittances not only represent an important source of foreign exchange, but also support many livelihoods.
Education, healthcare and household needs are the top uses of remittances in Kenya, sectors that tend to have a multiplier effect on development, according to an analysis by global payments company, WorldRemit.