International Day of Family Remittances (IDFR) is a United Nations observance held on June 16.
Its main goal is to recognize the financial contribution made by migrant workers to the sustainable development of their countries of origin.
The IDFR recognizes the more than 200 million migrant workers, women and men, who send money home to over 800 million family members.
This day further highlights the great resilience of migrant workers in the face of economic insecurities, natural and climate-related disasters and a global pandemic.
The IDFR is now globally recognized and is a key initiative in the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration (Objective 20), which urges the reduction of transfer costs and greater financial inclusion through remittances.
This day was created to stimulate active cooperation between the public and private sectors to maximize the impact of these funds in developing countries.
In 2016, IDFR was supported by 80 money transfer operators who committed to take action to ensure that the hard-earned money sent by migrant workers counts for even more.
The Day was officially endorsed by the UN General Assembly.
Remittance flows have increased five-fold over the past twenty years, serving in a counter-cyclical capacity during economic downturns in recipient countries.
COVID-19 has been a formidable test for global remittances. However, early forecasts of sharp declines greatly underestimated the resilience in remittances flows.
A May 2021 report by the World Bank reveals a drop in remittances of only 1.6 per cent in 2020, to US$540 billion from US$548 in 2019.