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World Bank refutes reports of $4.9 billion remittances from Pakistan to India.

ISLAMABAD: World Bank on Tuesday refuted media reports citing its Remittances and Migration Report of a US $4.9 billion remittances from Pakistan to India on September 21, 2016.

The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) had ordered an inquiry against former prime minister Nawaz Sharif and others for allegedly laundering $4.9 billion to India earlier today. The NAB chairman had taken notice of a media report that claimed that the incident was mentioned in the World Bank's Migration and Remittance Book 2016.

In a press release, the World Bank said its Remittances and Migration Report was 'an effort [...] to estimate migration and remittances numbers across the world.'

"The report does not include any mention of money laundering nor does it name any individuals," said the press release.

It also referred to a statement by the State Bank of Pakistan SBP that rejected estimates of US $4.9 billion remittances from Pakistan to India on September 21, 2016.

SBP rejects $4.9 billion remittances to India

In a press release issued on September 21, 2016, the State Bank of Pakistan had rejected the estimates of $4.9 billion remittances from Pakistan to India.

"This number is given in Migration and Remittances Factbook 2016 prepared by the Global Knowledge Partnership on Migration and Development (KNOMAD)."

The State Bank press release added that the Factbook data on bilateral remittance flows were estimates and not the actual flows which are based on a number of assumptions about the migrant stock, per worker income, etc.

"The methodology used to estimate these numbers is based on a World Bank's Working Paper by Ratha, Dilip, and William Shaw ( South-South migration and remittances. No. 102. World Bank Publications, 2007). This methodology has serious issues, particularly in case of Pakistan, as also acknowledged by the authors themselves stating that "Interpreting the meaning of migrant stocks also presents some difficulties. Pakistanis in India and Russians in Ukraine became migrants following the partition of the original country."

The State Bank thus concluded that the study was clearly flawed as the migrants at the time of Indo-Pak partition in 1947 had become Pakistani citizens. The State Bank categorically rejected such estimates as there were contrary to facts and did not make sense.

According to the State Bank, the actual Balance of Payments data showed that outflow of workers' remittances from Pakistan to India was $116 thousand in FY16 and the inflows from India to Pakistan were $329 thousand. The value of Pakistan's exports to India was $425 million, while imports from India amounted to $1,415 million during FY16.

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Publication:The Balochistan Express (Quetta, Pakistan)
Geographic Code:9PAKI
Date:May 8, 2018
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