Excerpt from the G-8 Hokkaido Toyko summit document, “Development and Africa”:
44. We acknowledge the importance of facilitating remittance flows given their development impacts. The G8 conference on remittances in Berlin in November 2007 reviewed the actions agreed at the Sea Island Summit in 2004. In this context, we will follow-up the seven recommendations adopted at the Berlin conference on improving data, development impact, remittance services, access to finance, innovative channels and on the creation of a Global Remittances Working Group. We appreciate the work done by international financial institutions in this regard and invite the World Bank to facilitate the work of the group and provide for coordination.
There is no institutional framework currently to address these flows in a coordinated manner. For official flows, there are hundreds of institutions; for foreign direct investment, there are tens of institutions; but for remittances, estimated to be $300 billion or three times the size of official aid flows to developing countries, there is none. The creation of this Working Group is an important step in taking the International remittances agenda forward.