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Report: How Did The COVID-19 Pandemic Impact Remittance Flows From The UAE?

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By Patrick Cooke, Managing Editor for the Middle East and Asia, Oxford Business Group

The UAE was relatively well placed to withstand the sudden shock of the COVID-19 pandemic thanks to its diversified economy, record forex reserves, moderate public debt levels, high credit rating and strong net external asset position. Home to a large number of expatriate workers, the country had become the world’s second-largest source of remittance outflows before Covid-19.

Despite the subsequent slowdown in global remittances, transfers from the UAE remained relatively robust, helping to sustain households in developing countries around the world. At the same time, the process of digitalisation in the UAE’s money transfer industry was accelerated by the need for social distancing to limit the spread of the virus. This should help to encourage growth in international money transfers and strengthen the long-term competitiveness of the segment, while reducing costs for customers.

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