Remittance To The Caribbean Declined In 2023

By NAN Business News Editor

News Americas, New York, NY, Fri. June 28, 2024: Remittance to the Caribbean region declined in 2023, according to the latest data analyzed by News Americas from the World Bank’s Migration and Development Brief.

Windel Pierre, 41, a Haitian cab driver, sends money back to Haiti from Miami, FL. (Photo by Peter Whoriskey /The Washington Post via Getty Images)

After a period of strong growth during 2021-2022, officially recorded remittance flows to the Caribbean in 2023 totaled USD 19.499 billion, according to the analysis. This is a decrease from the USD 20.144 billion recorded in 2022.

The only countries to report an increase in remittance inflows over 2022 were the Dominican Republic, Haiti, Belize, Trinidad and Tobago, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Grenada, and St. Lucia. Countries that saw no change were Guyana, Barbados, St. Maarten, Aruba, Antigua & Barbuda, and the Cayman Islands. Countries recording a decline included Jamaica, Curacao, The Bahamas, Suriname, St. Kitts & Nevis, and Dominica.

The 2023 remittance flow from the most to the least per country, based on the World Bank data, is as follows:

Here is the tabulated data for the totals of 2022 and 2023:

Country2022 – USD Billions/Millions2023- USD Billions/MillionsDominican Republic10,61910,278Haiti4,2473,798Jamaica3,5673,688Guyana525525Trinidad & Tobago204200Curacao116159Belize152142Suriname147148St. Vincent/Grenadines9289Barbados8585Grenada8270St. Lucia6462Sint Maarten4848The Bahamas4258Aruba3838St. Kitts & Nevis3638Antigua and Barbuda3535Dominica3438Cayman Islands10–


Globally, remittance flows to low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) moderated in 2023, reaching an estimated $656 billion, according to the World Bank’s latest Migration and Development Brief released today.

The modest 0.7% growth rate reflects large variances in regional growth. Nevertheless, remittances remained a crucial source of external finance for developing countries in 2023, bolstering the current accounts of several nations grappling with food insecurity and debt issues. In 2023, remittances surpassed foreign direct investment (FDI) and official development assistance (ODA). Remittance flows increased most to Latin America and the Caribbean (7.7%), followed by South Asia (5.2%), and East Asia and Pacific (4.8%, excluding China). Sub-Saharan Africa saw a slight decline of 0.3%, while the Middle East and North Africa experienced a nearly 15% drop, and Europe and Central Asia saw a 10.3% fall.

Looking ahead, remittances to LMICs are expected to grow at a faster rate of 2.3% in 2024, although this growth will be uneven across regions. Potential downside risks to these projections include weaker-than-expected economic growth in high-income migrant-hosting countries and volatility in oil prices and currency exchange rates.

“Migration and resulting remittances are essential drivers of economic and human development,” said Iffath Sharif, Global Director of the Social Protection and Jobs Global Practice at the World Bank. “Many countries are interested in managed migration in the face of global demographic imbalances and labor deficits on the one hand, and high levels of unemployment and skill gaps on the other. We are working on partnerships between countries sending and receiving migrants to facilitate training, especially for youth, to get the skills needed for better jobs and income at home and in destination countries.”

“The resilience of remittances underscores their importance for millions of people,” said Dilip Ratha, lead economist and lead author of the report. “Leveraging remittances for financial inclusion and capital market access can enhance the development prospects of recipient countries. The World Bank aims to reduce remittance costs and facilitate formal flows by mitigating political and commercial risks to promote private investment in this sector.”

Sending remittances remains costly. In the fourth quarter of 2023, the global average cost of sending $200 was 6.4% of the amount being sent, slightly up from 6.2% a year earlier and well above the SDG target of 3%. Digital remittances had a lower cost of 5%, compared with 7% for non-digital methods, highlighting the benefits of technological advancements in reducing the financial burden on migrants.

With remittances growing in importance, accurate data collection is essential to support the UN Sustainable Development Goals on reducing costs and increasing volume. However, statistical data remain inconsistent and incomplete. The global gap between inward and outward remittance flows has widened, with informal channels being a major factor, such as migrants carrying cash by hand when they return home. The International Working Group to Improve Data on Remittance Flows (RemitStat) will release a report later this year with recommendations for improving data.

The Caribbean Saw An Increase In Foreign Direct Investment in 2023

By NAN Business Editor

News Americas, NEW YORK, NY, Fri. June 28, 2024: Foreign direct investment (FDI) to the Caribbean saw an increase in 2023 compared to 2022, a analysis of the 2024 World Investment Report data showed. Excluding offshore financial centers, overall FDI in the Caribbean was up by 6 percent, with most countries experiencing growth. The Dominican Republic saw a 7 percent increase in inflows year-on-year.

Over the past five years, foreign investments have expanded across the region’s main economic groupings, with flows to the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) tripling compared to 2018.

In 2022, the CARICOM region recorded USD 1,768,365 in foreign direct investment, while in 2023 the total was USD 1,813,150.

Here is the tabulated data for foreign direct investment (FDI) inflows in 2023 and 2022:

Country2023 (USD)2022 (USD)British Virgin Islands1,068,2461,028,356Cayman Islands601,061572,927Dominican Republic56,37251,982Bahamas29,90428,502Jamaica18,76318,332Guyana10,27917,074Trinidad and Tobago9,9229,918Grenada2,1531,990Aruba4,5084,686Belize2,8122,679Saint Lucia2,0041,865Suriname1,8531,936Saint Kitts and Nevis1,7091,676Saint Vincent and the Grenadines1,6831,601Anguilla1,3821,528Curaçao1,2361,081Sint Maarten224190Montserrat4942

Saint Lucia Opens Path To Citizenship For Overseas-Born Descendants

News Americas, New York, NY, Thurs. June 27, 2024: Second and third-generation Saint Lucian descendants born overseas now have a clear path to acquiring Saint Lucian citizenship.

This development follows a vote by legislators on Wednesday to amend the Citizenship of Saint Lucia Act, paving the way for descendants of Saint Lucian parentage to become naturalized citizens.

Once the amendment to the Citizenship of Saint Lucia Act takes effect, a person born outside Saint Lucia will become a citizen at the date of their birth if, at that date, their father, mother, grandfather, or grandmother is a citizen by birth.

This means the children and grandchildren of Saint Lucians who migrated and started families abroad now have the opportunity to inherit their birthright – Saint Lucian citizenship.

The historic amendment to the Citizenship of Saint Lucia Act will enable Saint Lucian descendants born overseas to represent the country on a national level and create new avenues for second and third-generation Saint Lucians to contribute to the development of Saint Lucia.

Tens of thousands of Saint Lucian descendants living in diaspora communities around the world will benefit from the amended Citizenship of Saint Lucia Act.

“McBee” Triumphs At American Premiere In Jamaica, Queens In Caribbean American Heritage Month

News Americas, New York, NY, June 26, 2024: Broadway World Award winner David Heron and the cast of Alwin Bully’s “McBee” are celebrating the success of the play’s American premiere, which took place on Sunday, June 23rd, at the Jamaica Performing Arts Center, (JPAC), in Jamaica, Queens, New York.

From left- David Heron, Gerard Joseph and Dianne Dixon in McBee on June 23, 2024 in Jamaica, NYC. (IAN BUDDINGTON image)

 Cast Of McBee on June 23, 2024 in Jamaica, Queens, NY. (Ian Buddington image)

The play, produced and directed by Heron, was presented as a one-night-only staged reading in tribute to its playwright, the late Alwin Bully, and as a special cultural event celebrating New York City’s annual Caribbean American Heritage Month festivities.

Luke Forbes, Denise Hunt and Gerard Joseph in McBee. (Ian Buddington image)

A large and enthusiastic audience filled JPAC for the first-ever performance of Bully’s play on American soil, culminating in a standing ovation that lasted several minutes. The star-studded cast was led by Amazon Prime “Harlem” star Luke Forbes and “How Stella Got Her Groove Back” actress Denise Hunt. They were joined by Jerry Benzwick, Lincoln Brown, Dianne Dixon, Emilio Evans, Gerard Joseph, Miranda Melhado, Mitzie Pratt, and James Duke Walker.

Lincoln Brown and Denise Hunt in McBee. (Ian Buddington image)

Producer-director Heron, who won the 2023 Broadway World Award for Best Supporting Performer for his role as Caliban in The Colonial Theatre of Rhode Island’s “The Tempest,” joined the cast as a last-minute replacement for an actor who withdrew days before the production.

Mitzie Pratt and James Duke Walker in McBee. (Ian Buddington image)

The performance was preceded by a Caribbean Cuisine Reception in collaboration with Golden Krust Restaurant, and free tea sampling by sponsors Kendel Instant Ginger Teas.

Dianne Dixon and Jerry Benzwick in McBee. (Ian Buddington image)

Anita Bully, the widow of the late Dominica-born playwright Alwin Bully, welcomed the audience with a brief onstage address, accompanied by their son Brent. She explained that for her late husband’s, “McBee” was not just an adaptation, but an extension of Shakespeare’s original “Macbeth.”

Jerry Benzwick and Miranda Melhadoin McBee. (Ian Buddington image)

“It is a retelling and reworking in much the same manner that Shakespeare handled the original story from Holinshed’s Chronicles,” she said. “Alwin did not try to rewrite Shakespeare’s poetry. His intention was to give the story a Caribbean immediacy while maintaining the original intent.”

Anita Bully also spoke about the recently formed Alwin Bully Foundation, which aims to continue his vision of providing training for promising young individuals in the visual and performing arts.

Heron shared his experience of being mentored by Bully, recounting how the first two plays he wrote – “Ecstasy” and “Intermission” – were developed and prepared for production through a staged reading process led by Bully and his theatre company, The Company Limited, in Jamaica in the 1990s.

“Thanks largely to Alwin’s vision, new playwrights had the opportunity to have their work showcased and chosen for a staged reading presentation produced by The Company Limited, with a professional cast and director,” he said. “I owe much of my early success as a playwright to Alwin, who spent many hours motivating and guiding me as I honed the scripts.”

“McBee” follows the story of Caribbean political power couple Allan and Alice McBee (played by Luke Forbes and Denise Hunt). After Allan receives a prophecy from three Rastafarians that he is destined to become the nation’s Prime Minister, he and his wife devise a bloody plan to make it a reality, with explosive consequences for themselves and their country.

Heron described Sunday night’s performance as “The second coming of McBee,” expressing hope that the play will find its way into the right hands for a fully mounted production. “There is simply nothing else out there quite like it, and it deserves to be seen as far and wide as possible,” he stated.

Other sponsors of Sunday night’s premiere event included The True Tribute Organization, IMC Media, and Results Promo and Marketing.

Top Jamaican Coaches Slam JAAA and JOA Ahead Of Paris Olympics

News Americas, New York, NY, Weds. June 26, 2024: Renowned Jamaican born athletics coaches Stephen Francis and Glen Mills have publicly criticized the Jamaica Athletics Administrative Association, (JAAA), and the Jamaica Olympic Association, (JOA), for what they describe as gross incompetence and insufficient support for the country’s track and field athletes, potentially jeopardizing their participation in the upcoming Paris Olympic Games.

Jamaican coach Steve Francis during a training session ahead of the 2018 Commonwealth Games at Runaway Bay Sports Centre on March 23, 2018 in Gold Coast, Australia. (Photo by Chris Hyde/Getty Images for GOLDOC)

Francis, known for his no-nonsense approach, lambasted the JAAA for its handling of the men’s 4x400m relay team’s qualification efforts in an interview with Sports Max. He expressed frustration over the country’s recent failed attempts to qualify, with the team of Reheem Hayles, JeVaughn Powell, Kimar Farquharson, and Tarees Rhoden clocking 2:59.75 at the NACAC New Life Invitational in the Bahamas, falling short of Zambia’s 2:59.12 set in March.

This marks Jamaica’s third unsuccessful attempt at qualification following previous failures at the World Athletics Relays in May. Currently, France and Zambia occupy the final qualifying slots, with Jamaica racing against time to secure a place before the June 30 deadline. Failure to qualify would be a historic absence for Jamaica from the men’s 4x400m relay at major championships.

Francis criticized JAAA President Garth Gayle for appointing individuals lacking senior athletics expertise, arguing that the country’s reliance on school principals and high school coaches for senior team decisions leads to poor outcomes. He also proposed solutions for qualification, suggesting the scheduling of a 4x400m relay during the National Senior Championships from June 27-30, involving international teams to facilitate the qualification effort.

Triple Olympian Usain Bolt alongside his then coach Glen Mills during a training session ahead of the 16th IAAF World Athletics Championships London 2017 on August 2, 2017 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Michael Steele/Getty Images)

Meanwhile, Mills voiced his discontent in a separate interview with Sports Max, with the JOA’s decision to allocate only 14 slots for team officials to the JAAA for the Paris Games, despite Jamaica expecting to field at least 60 track and field athletes. Mills, who has attended nine Olympics, called the allocation “woefully inadequate” and argued for an increase to 21 officials, given the logistical needs of managing such a large team.

Mills emphasized the critical need for adequate support staff, including coaches, therapists, and doctors, to ensure the athletes’ optimal performance. He underscored Jamaica’s significant contributions to the Olympic movement and urged the JOA to reconsider its decision. JAAA President Gayle confirmed ongoing but unsuccessful efforts to negotiate an increase in the allocation.

With the clock ticking towards the June 30 qualification deadline, it remains to be seen if Francis’ and Mills’ suggestions will be heeded by the country’s athletics governing bodies to secure Jamaica’s participation and success in the men’s 4x400m relay and broader Olympic events.

Will The Growth Of US Cricket Impact The West Indies?

By Dr. Basil Springer

News Americas, NEW YORK, NY, Mon. June 24, 2024: From the mid-late 1970s to the early 1990s, the West Indies team was the strongest team in the world in both red-ball and white-ball cricket. However, this dominance has not been sustained, and at times, our performances have trended towards the depths of despair for cricket fans.

Supporters of USA cheer for their team during the ICC men’s Twenty20 World Cup 2024 Super Eight cricket match between USA and West Indies at Kensington Oval in Bridgetown, Barbados on June 21, 2024. (Photo by RANDY BROOKS/AFP via Getty Images)

This fluctuating performance can be attributed to several factors: financial investment, marketing approaches, infrastructure, pitch curators, operating logistics and coaching systems, all of which need improvements. The growth of cricket in the United States presents opportunities and challenges for the sustainability and resilience of West Indies cricket. I have been closely monitoring this development, which has the potential to significantly reshape the cricketing and socioeconomic landscape in our region.

The United States, with its vast population and diverse immigrant communities, represents an untapped market for cricket. The sport’s increasing popularity there, driven by the success of Major League Cricket (MLC), can substantially boost its global profile. This burgeoning interest can positively impact West Indies cricket in several ways.

First, the expansion of cricket in the U.S. can increase financial investment in the sport. The commercial potential of the U.S. market is enormous. As cricket gains traction, we can expect more sponsorship deals, broadcast rights agreements, and merchandise sales. This influx of capital can benefit West Indies cricket through collaborations and shared investments, enhanced facilities, coaching contracts and player development programs.

Second, the growth of cricket in the U.S. can provide West Indies players more opportunities to compete at a higher level. Establishing a professional league like MLC can serve as an additional platform for our players to showcase their talents and gain valuable experience. This exposure can help bridge the gap between domestic and international cricket, fostering a new generation of West Indies cricketers better equipped to compete on the world stage.

However, there are also challenges to consider. The rise of cricket in the U.S. could lead to a talent drain, with young Caribbean cricketers potentially being lured by the financial incentives and lifestyle offered in the United States. This could weaken the talent pool available for West Indies cricket if not managed carefully.

Moreover, the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) must proactively engage with U.S. cricket authorities to ensure mutual benefits. Strategic partnerships, exchange programs, and joint ventures should be developed and nurtured to help both regions flourish without one overshadowing the other.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Dr. Basil Springer GCM is a Change-Engine Consultant. His email address is ba*****@ma*******************.com. His columns may be found at and on

Caribbean Billionaire Rihanna Supports A$AP At First Show

News Americas, New York, NY, June 21, 2024: Caribbean born billionaire, Rihanna, showed up for beau A$AP Rocky as her partner and daddy to her two children, launched his first American Sabotage by AWGE menswear spring 2025 show in Paris.

RiRi redefined street style during Paris Fashion Week on Friday to proudly support her partner of nearly four years.

US rapper and designer ASAP Rocky (L) and his wife Barbadian singer Rihanna (C) pose at the end of the American Sabotage AWGE Spring/Summer 2025 menswear ready to wear collection show as part of Paris Fashion Week in Paris, on June 21, 2024. (Photo by GEOFFROY VAN DER HASSELT/AFP via Getty Images)

Rihanna’s ensemble for the event epitomized a blend of street style and high fashion. She sported a merlot-hued cropped puffer jacket with feather lining on the interior. Underneath, she wore a white tank top style dress accented with garter elements off the hemline. Her look featured additional layered elements, including an army green garment and a gray and red fabric piece beneath the cropped jacket.

Rihanna was seated in the front row, documenting the models as they showcased pieces from A$AP Rocky’s latest collection, American Sabotage. This event, which marked A$AP Rocky’s debut runway show, also served as an announcement for his new album, “Don’t Be Dumb,” now available for pre-order. The show was held at Karl Lagerfeld’s former home in Paris and attracted notable attendees such as Pusha T, JW Anderson, and Alexandre Arnault, who was seated beside Rihanna.

This Haitian Immigrant Will Represent Her Country At The Olympics

News Americas, New York, NY, Fri. June 21, 2024: Haitians have something positive to cheer about in the midst of all the bad news that features daily globally on the crime and gang violence in the Caribbean country.

Lynnzee Brown of Haiti performs her floor routine during Women’s Qualification at the Artistic Gymnastics World Championships-Antwerp 2023 at the Antwerp Sportpaleis on October 2nd, 2023 in Antwerp, Belgium. She is now heading to Paris 2024. (Photo by Tim Clayton/Corbis via Getty Images)

Penn State women’s gymnastics assistant coach and Haitian immigrant Lynnzee Brown earned a universality place qualification from the Olympic Games Tripartite Commission and will represent Haiti in women’s artistic gymnastics competition at the 2024 Paris Olympic Games.

Brown will compete in her very first Olympics this summer in Paris following her previous outings on the global stage at the 2023 Artistic Gymnastics World Championships in Antwerp this past September, as well as multiple Pan American competitions within the last year. When she steps foot in the gym in Paris, she will become the first Haitian gymnast ever to compete in the Olympic Games. She will begin competition in the women’s qualification round, slated to begin July 28.

“I’m trying to think of what to say but I honestly have nothing that feels good enough,” Brown said. “I’m grateful for this journey and those that have supported me through it. I am honored that the Haitian federation is supporting me through this process, and I look forward to seeing what the next generation of athletes will do.”

The former Denver standout gymnast joined Penn State’s coaching staff in the summer of 2023 following an incredible career as a Pioneer. She was a ten-time WCGA Postseason All-American, a co-National Champion, and a two-time AAI Award finalist during her collegiate career. In her first season with the Nittany Lions, Brown and her fellow Penn State assistant coaches were named the WCGA North East Region Assistant Coaches of the Year following Penn State’s phenomenal 2024 campaign.

“We are so excited for Lynnzee,” said head coach Sarah Brown. “Making the Olympics was one of the first goals Lynnzee and I talked about when we connected last year, and I couldn’t be more proud of the work she has put in to turn her dream into reality. Being named the first Haitian gymnast to ever compete in the Olympics is a tremendous accomplishment, and we look forward to watching her compete for her country in Paris!”

Caribbean Roots Blac Chyna Defends Herself Against Custody Claims

News Americas, New York, NY, June 21, 2024: Caribbean roots star, Blac Chyna, has responded to Rob Kardashian’s claim that he has sole custody of their daughter, Dream. The 33-year-old entrepreneur, who shares a nine-year-old son, King Cairo, with Tyga and five-year-old daughter, Dream, with Kardashian, faced criticism from both fathers last week. They challenged her complaints about not receiving child support and claimed to have primary custody of the children.

Caribbean roots star Blac Chyna attended the Ladylike Women Of Excellence Awards x Fashion Show at The Beverly Hilton on June 01, 2024 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Presley Ann/Getty Images for Ladylike Women of Excellence Awards)

However, Neighborhood Talk clarified the custody agreement between Rob and Chyna. According to the agreement, Dream is with her mother from Saturday to Wednesday, with alternating weeks. The outlet shared this information on Instagram, urging people to stop criticizing Blac Chyna. They wrote, “So y’all need to get off Blac Chyna back. Rob should feel bad for creating that narrative to be honest.” Chyna commented on the post, affirming, “Facts [prayer emoji] (sic).”

The situation escalated after Tyga and Rob reacted to Blac Chyna’s social media post about having to give up several of her cars due to financial difficulties. She lamented her struggles as a single mother, stating, “Yesterday I had to give up 3 of my cars …my reasons… morals, beliefs, being a single mother, no support. I’m a MAMA. Single no support child support.”

Tyga quickly responded, explaining why he doesn’t pay child support. He commented on a screenshot of Chyna’s tweets, saying, “I pay 40k a year for my son school he lives w me mon-sat. Why would I pay child support lol.(sic).” Rob echoed this sentiment, stating, “I pay 37k a year for my daughter’s school. Handle every single medical expense. I pay for all her extracurricular activities. I have my daughter from Tuesday-Saturday. Why would I pay child support lol.”

In a humorous exchange, Tyga noted the difference in their payments and tagged Rob, asking, “how u pay 3k less. Let me kno the plug.(sic).” Despite the financial challenges, Blac Chyna continues to defend her role as a dedicated mother, maintaining her commitment to raising her children while managing her career.

Jamaican Launches Vodka Made From Yam

News Americas, New York, NY, June 20, 2024: A Jamaican national has come up with a unique vodka, set to take the market by storm later this month.

Wait a Bit Vodka, a premium small-batch vodka crafted in Jamaica, has entered the market with a unique twist according to the Jamaica Observer. Made from select yellow yams grown by small farmers in the mountainside town of Wait a Bit, Trelawny, this vodka boasts a blend of local spring water from the Cockpit Country. Gluten-free and exceptionally fresh, Wait a Bit Vodka promises a high-quality spirit while supporting local farming initiatives.

Principal Lincoln Nicholson of Wait a Bit vodka.

Wait a Bit Distillers was founded by principal Lincoln Nicholson with a vision to produce premium quality spirits infused with authentic Jamaican flavors. The goal is to showcase these unique flavors to the world, starting with their flagship product, Wait a Bit Vodka. The ingredients for Wait a Bit Vodka are locally sourced, primarily within a 10-mile radius of the distillery in Trelawny. This proximity ensures freshness and supports the local farming community.

Wait a Bit Vodka is set to hit the market in late June 2024. It will be available at select retailers, offering consumers a taste of Jamaica’s finest small-batch vodka. True to its artisanal nature, Wait a Bit Vodka is crafted in small batches, with every aspect, including the packaging, done by hand. This attention to detail highlights the brand’s commitment to quality and craftsmanship.

The distillery’s first major breakthrough came after a tasting session with a well-known spirits company, which praised the high quality of the vodka. This endorsement has been a significant boost for the brand. The response to Wait a Bit Vodka has been overwhelmingly positive. Consumers appreciate the fresh taste and the use of locally sourced ingredients, which support small farmers in Jamaica.

Wait a Bit Distillers aims to grow its brand internationally, making Wait a Bit Vodka known for its exceptional quality and unique Jamaican yellow yam base. The journey has not been without challenges, especially with engineering works and operating in rural Jamaica. However, the company has embraced these hurdles, embodying the spirit of patience reflected in its name, Wait a Bit.

Jamaicans are encouraged to support Wait a Bit Vodka, a product made from locally grown yellow yams by hardworking farmers. The brand’s focus on quality and its roots in the local community make it a premium choice in the market.