HANOI, Vietnam (AP) — Economists say overseas remittances to Vietnam have fallen in the past year and could take a larger hit in the future from tighter U.S. immigration policies.
According to government figures, remittances to the Communist country from Vietnamese working in the U.S. increased steadily over the past 20 years to a record $13.3 billion in 2015 before falling to $9 billion last year.
Economist Nguyen Minh Phong said Thursday that last year's decline in remittances from the U.S. was mainly due to Vietnam cutting interest rates to about 0 percent from 5 or 6 percent. The lower yields on bank savings offer less incentive for sending money back.
Credit Suisse said in a report released this week that tighter border controls imposed by the administration of President Donald Trump could reduce remittances equivalent to 0.4 percent of Vietnam's GDP.