Remittances are a crucial lifeline to the region’s cash-strapped oil importing economies.

Thanks largely to Cairo’s floatation of the Egyptian Pound in late 2016, Mena remittance inflows topped $56bn in 2017 after having fallen year-on-year since 2014. Egyptian inflows hit $20bn according to World Bank estimates, up from $16.6bn in 2016—a 20% increase year-on-year (see chart 1).

Egypt’s economy now appears on the upswing, with 5.2% growth projected for 2018 (MEES,...