NON-RESIDENT Zimbabweans are sending least US$490 million back home every year the International Fund for Agriculture Development (IFAD) has said.
IFAD is the agriculture arm of the Washington-based World Bank.
"Both official and informal remittances could be between US$360 million and US$490 million every year in Zimbabwe," IFAD said in a statement.
It said comparative statistics showed that within SADC Zimbabwe ranks fourth in terms of volume of remittances received - after South Africa, Angola and Mozambique - and third in terms of share of the GDP (Gross Domestic Product), after Lesotho and Mozambique.
"The vast majority of Zimbabwean migrants regularly send back remittances," IFAD said.
"Three quarters of them sent cash to households, companies and rentals.
IFAD however, said data about Zimbabwe was difficult to compile because some of the remittances are done through informal channels.
"While there is no doubt that Zimbabwe receives a considerable amount of remittances, it must be outlined that accurate information is difficult to obtain as the vast majority of remittances are currently transferred through informal channels.
"Therefore, estimates on remittance flows to Zimbabwe have to be considered with great caution," the statement read.
Official remittances to Zimbabwe have increased considerably from US$17 million in 1980 when the country gained independence.
The remittance figures jumped significantly in the last decade as millions of Zimbabweans left the country to escape a biting economic crisis which was characterized by world record inflation and unemployment figures.
Most crossed the borders into neighbouring Bostwana and South Africa while others moved to Europe and North America.