Updating an ODA policy in Canada: the Role of Global Remittances in Development

  • Cynthia Bansak St Lawrence University
  • Nicole Simpson


The federal government has pledged to update Canada's development assistance (ODA) policy and this paper examines the important role of remittances in the development program. Remittances can serve as a significant form of cross-border capital flows and can have sizable effects on both the sending and receiving countries. This policy piece provides an overview of trends in global remittances and gives a context for the policy discussion on the relationship between remittances and ODA. The paper draws from the authors’ expertise and presents a background on the primary reasons behind global remittances and their impacts on other countries including the United States, Mexico, Nepal and Kenya. Within the context of Canada, the paper also examines how remittances have been able to complement and possibly drive other development reform efforts domestically and abroad.  The goal of the analysis is to help inform the policy discussion in Canada and concludes with a set of policy recommendations for the Canadian federal government.

Briefing Papers