Money Sent Home By Mexicans Working Abroad Rose By 7.6% In 2023, To Reach A Record $63 Billion

MEXICO CITY (AP) — The money that Mexican migrants send home to their relatives grew by 7.6% in 2023, to reach a record $63.3 billion for the year, Mexico’s central bank said Thursday.

The money transfers, known as remittances, have been booming since the coronavirus pandemic, but the rate of growth continued to cool somewhat in 2023.

In 2022, remittances grew by 13.4%, totaling about $58.9 billion for the year as a whole. In 2021, remittances grew by an astounding 27.1%, totaling about $51.6 billion for that year.

Observers have said the slower growth may be due to a combination of factors like slower economic growth in the United States — where most Mexican migrants work — higher inflation and a stronger Mexican peso.

Remittances now surpass almost all other sources of the country’s foreign income, including tourism, oil exports and most manufacturing exports.

Mexico receives more money from remittances than any other country except India. Indian migrants send home about $125 billion each year. China’s share of remittances was affected by the coronavirus pandemic.

The average amount of each transfer remained steady at $393, just a slight increase from the average $391 in 2022, but the total number of transfers rose 6.6% to over 161,000, according to the Bank of Mexico.

Remittances started their dramatic rise in May 2020, around the time the pandemic began hitting in Mexico.

Remittances as a percentage of Mexico’s GDP almost doubled over the past decade, growing from 2% of GDP in 2010 to 3.8% in 2020; since then that may have grown to around 4.5%. Between 2010 and 2020, the percentage of households in Mexico receiving remittances rose from 3.6% to 5.1%.