From January to March, Zimbabwe received US$420 million in diaspora remittances, latest trade figures have shown.

In the same period last year, diasporans remitted US$387 million.

Remittances have gone a long way in covering the country’s trade deficit which has since widened.

Zimbabwe’s manufacturing sector has gone under a de-industrialised spiral causing the country to export raw items.

Zimbabwe has a significant diaspora in the United Kingdom with the majority arriving in the 1999–2006 period.

A remittance is money sent by a person in a foreign land to his or her home country.

Due to the huge sums involved, remittances are now being recognised as an important contributor to the country’s growth and development.