Diaspora Nigerians wired $22 billion home in 2017, an African record and the fifth largest remittance by immigrants, according to the World Bank.

Egypt received $20 billion from its citizens abroad, according to figures published by the bank today.

The World Bank said payments from immigrants back to their home countries rebounded to reach a new record in 2017 but the costs of transferring funds also increased.

The stronger-than-expected recovery in remittances — payments that are key to supporting the economies of many poor countries — was driven by growth in Europe, Russia and the United States, the World Bank said in a report.

The bank estimates that officially recorded remittances to low- and middle-income countries reached $466 billion in 2017, an increase of 8.5 percent over $429 billion in 2016. They are expected to increase by about four percent this year.

Remittance inflows improved in all regions. The top remittance recipients were India with $69 billion, followed by China ($64 billion), the Philippines ($33 billion), Mexico ($31 billion).

NAN