VietNamNet Bridge – The amount of foreign currency sent to Vietnam by overseas Vietnamese last year reached more than $10 billion, said Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh on February 17.
Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh.
According to Minh, the amount of money sent home by overseas Vietnamese over the years has contributed significantly to the economy.
In 2012, Vietnam attracted more than $10 billion in remittances and the country ranks seventh among the world’s most remittance-receiving countries.
“The amount of remittances has accounted for 60-70 percent of foreign investment in Vietnam since 1991 and this is the real source of money contributing effectively to the national economic development, to the stabilization of the exchange rate and the increase of foreign exchange reserves,” Minh said.
“We appreciate and encourage overseas Vietnamese and Vietnamese people who study and work abroad to send remittances to Vietnam because it benefits both their families and the country,” the minister said.
According to the State Committee for Overseas Vietnamese, remittances in 2012 increased by more than 10% compared with 2011. The increase of remittances is partly due to improvements in transactions procedures.
Contributing greatly to the remittances this year is more than 4 million overseas Vietnamese and especially the 400,000 Vietnamese workers in Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Taiwan and the Middle East.
This year, the amount of remittances sold to the banking system greatly increased. According to Nguyen Hoang Minh, director of the State Bank in Ho Chi Minh City, 30% of remittances were sold to banks last year compared to 14 percent in 2011. “Exchange rate stability and the small difference between the exchange rates of the banks and the black market is significant reasons to make this distinction,” he said.
Compiled by S. Tung