Remittance flows to Kenya defy the odds during the COVID-19 pandemic


Despite the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on wages and employment across the world, the Kenyan diaspora community continues to send money back home to their families.
The Central Bank of Kenya recently released data showing that remittance flows to the country increased by 10 per cent, from USD 2.796 billion in 2019 to USD 3.095 billion in 2020, accounting for three per cent of the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP). This is contrary to projections made in 2020 that predicted that remittances in low and middle income countries were likely to decrease as a result of the pandemic.
The increase in remittance flows to Kenya is a result of financial innovations that have opened up more convenient channels, such as using mobile phones for transactions, which make it easy for families to send and receive money despite the wide spread restriction of movement and lockdowns.