The primary source of official data on the migrants’ remittances includes the annual balance of payments records that are compiled in the Balance of Payments Yearbook. This yearbook is published by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) annually. The term “migrant remittances” in migration literature refers to the transfer in cash or other form from a migrant to residents in the home country. As per the IMF data, there are three categories of data that are mentioned below.
(1)Workers’ remittances – It refers to the transfers done in cash or in kind from the migrants to resident in their home country. It refers to the ongoing transfers between same family members where the migrant is working and residing in foreign locations for more than a year.
(2) Compensation to employees – It refers to the salaries, wages, and other remuneration in cash paid to individuals who work in a country apart from where they reside legally. These include the money earned by short-term migrant workers that are working abroad for less than a year. It also includes the wages earned by the border workers who work in the neighbouring country but do not reside legally over there. It includes the salaries earned by the local staff of foreign institutions like embassies, international organizations, and companies that operates locally and are based abroad.
(3) Migrants’ transfers are the capital transfers of financial assets that are done by migrants as they migrant from one country to other and stay there for over one year.
The categories used by the IMF are actually well defined and there are many issues related to their implementation in worldwide locations that may affect their comparability. The data should be used with careful interpretation and it has serious limitations. The official remittance figures may also overvalue the inflows size and other type of monetary transfers is difficult to be distinguished from the remittances.