Kenya Received $315.8 million in Remittances in May: CBK Report

CBK expects the remittance inflows to support the weakening shilling that has hit record lows against the US dollar.

Kenya received over USD315.8 million in remittances in May, a 22.3 per cent increase from the previous year, despite a pandemic that continues to devastate the country’s economy, according to the central bank. 

According to the CBK, the cumulative inflows in the 12 months to May 2021 totalled USD 3,365 million compared to USD 2,816 million in the same period in 2020, a 19.5 per cent increase. 

The report said the US remains the largest source of diaspora inflows into Kenya. 

“The United States continues to be the largest source of remittances to Kenya, an all-time high of $182.6 million accounting for 57.8 per cent of remittances in May 2021,” said the CBK in its weekly bulletin report

In the report, other sources of remittances into Kenya were the UK, Saudi Arabia, Germany and Qatar. Kenyans in the UK remitted $34.6 million while Kenyans in Saudi Arabia remitted $15 million in May 2021. 

Remittances from Germany and Qatar hit $10.6 million and $6.3 million respectively in the period under review. 

In Africa, Tanzania was the leading source of remittances into Kenya, remitting $4.1 million in May. 

CBK only measures the money remitted through formal channels that include commercial banks and other authorized international remittances service providers in Kenya.

Remittances in Kenya are the biggest source of foreign exchange, ahead of tourism, tea, coffee, and horticulture exports.