7 Dec 2010

Remittance fees to Pacific countries higher than global averages says report

10:37 am on 7 December 2010

A new report says the average cost of remitting to the Pacific is significantly higher than global averages.

Fiji Live reports that according to the report called "Trends in Remittance Fees and Charges" prepared by Australia and New Zealand, this is a challenge to the Pacific's primary remittances policy.

It says the average cost of sending remittances to Pacific Island Countries is 21.7 percent of the amount remitted when sent from Australia, and 15.2 per cent when sent from New Zealand.

It says it is estimated that remitters to the Pacific pay at least 90 million US dollars in remittance fees each year.

The report, which was presented at the recent Forum Economic Ministers meeting in Niue, noted that around 470 million US dollars was formally remitted to Forum island countries in 2008.

Following discussions about the report, the Forum Economic Ministers Meeting in Niue agreed "to explore and prioritise support for domestic initiatives in both sending and receiving countries to promote lower remittance costs."