Remittances, financial development and economic growth: empirical evidence from Lesotho

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Peer-Reviewed Research
  • SDG 8
  • Abstract:

    Increasingly remittances now constitute a great source of foreign currency inflows for many developing countries. In some instances remittances have outpaced the growth of foreign direct investment (FDI). Amongst others, remittances can be used as a vehicle of savings mobilisation as well as fostering the supply of credit by providing liquidity to the market. In this article we investigate the causal relationship between the remittances, financial development and economic growth in Lesotho for the period 1975 to 2010. We make use of per capita remittances, real per capita broad money supply and real per capita growth domestic product as the proxies for remittances, financial development and economic growth respectively. We then test for cointegration amongst the variables by applying the Johansen procedure and then test for Granger causality based on the vector error correction model (VECM). Our results confirm the existence of at least one cointegrating relationship and also indicate that the direction of causality runs from remittances to the economy without feedback. The results also suggest that financial development Granger causes economic growth without feedback which is consistent with ‘supply-leading’ growth hypothesis. The results also confirm a causal relationship running from financial development to remittances without feedback. The results also lend credence to the “complementarity’ hypothesis in that, remittances complement rather than substitute financial development in bringing about economic growth.