Dhaka, Bangladesh (BBN) – The inflow of remittances increased significantly in October over the previous month of September last due mainly to the Eid-ul-Azha festival, officials said.

The remittances from Bangladeshi nationals working abroad were estimated at US$1.23 billion in October 2013, up by $209.03 million from the previous month. In September last the remittances stood at $1.02 billion, according to the central bank statistics, released on Monday.  

 “The inflow of remittance increased significantly in the month of October because of the Eid festival,” a senior official of the Bangladesh Bank (BB) told BBN in Dhaka, adding that the flow of inward remittance may fall slightly this month.

Bangladesh received a total of $4.50 billion during the July-October period of the fiscal year (FY) 2013-14, registering a negative growth of 10.13 per cent over the corresponding period of the previous fiscal, the BB data showed.

The central bank earlier took a series of measures to encourage expatriate Bangladeshis to send their hard earned money through formal banking channel instead of the illegal “hundi” system to boost the country’s foreign exchange reserves.

Most private commercial banks along with the state-owned ones are trying desperately to increase the flow of inward remittances from the Middle East, the United Kingdom, Malaysia, Singapore, Italy and the United States.

 “We’re trying to increase the inflow of remittances continuously from different parts of the world through establishing new contacts with overseas companies," a senior official of a leading private commercial bank said.

He also said most of the banks are still serious about increasing the inflow of remittances through official channels to meet their internal foreign exchange need.

BBN/SSR/AD-04Nov13-8:51 pm (BST)