Remittance hits US$ 2.7mn last year.
Records maintained with the Royal Monetary Authority (RMA) show that remittance through Remit Bhutan hit more than US$ 2.7mn as of December last year. So far, 1,175 foreign currency accounts have been opened with the financial institutions of country. In terms of actual operations, the RMA has received more than US$ 2.7mn as of December 2017, with 44% remittance from Australia. According to RMA's annual report 2016-17, as of September 2017, RMA received US$ 2.14mn of remittance. The report also states that remittance from USA was US$ 0.27mn comprising 13% of the total remittance, US$ 0.19mnfrom Europe comprising 9%, US$ 0.39mn from Africa comprising 19% and US$ 1.29mn from other countries comprising 59%.
To create awareness among nonresident Bhutanese on Remit Bhutan, the RMA in collaboration with Ministry of Finance and banks led by the finance minister, Namgay Dorji disseminated information on Remit Bhutan in New York on October 10, 2016, Perth and Canberra on February 14, 2017, Dubai on October 19, 2017 and Kuwait on October 21, 2017. Eight months after introducing Remit Bhutan, remittance hit US$ 1mn on May 16, 2017. Bank of Bhutan (BoB) had received the highest remittance as compared to other banks. BoB provides 0.25% higher interest rate on foreign currency accounts than the banks in Australia.
Remit Bhutan was launched on September 21, 2016 by Prime Minister Dasho Tshering Tobgay as a landmark policy initiative to provide a platform for non-resident Bhutanese to remit their savings and earnings to Bhutan through banking. The scheme is also an element of a broader financial inclusion initiative, providing non-resident Bhutanese a platform to contribute to nation building. Under this scheme the non-resident Bhutanese can open Non-Resident Bhutanese Foreign Currency Account and Non-Resident Bhutanese Ngultrum Account.