OFW remittances continue recovery in July

By: Daxim L. Lucas – Reporter / @daxinq

Dollar remittances from expatriate Filipinos grew for the second consecutive month in July due mainly to the increase in hard currency sent home by land-based workers with longer term employment contracts, according to the central bank.

In a statement, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) said the latest data showed remittances increasing by 7.6 percent year-on-year to $3.08 billion in July 2020 from $2.87 billion in July last year.

This brought the total remittances for the first seven months of 2020 to $18.66 billion, or 2.4-percent lower than the $19.12 billion posted a year ago.

“The growth was attributed to the 12.6-percent increase in remittances from land-based workers with work contracts of one year or more to $2.467 billion in July 2020 from $2.192 billion in July 2019,” the BSP said.

Meanwhile, remittan­c­es­­ from sea-based workers fell by 9.2 percent from $613 million posted a year ago to $557 million in July 2020 due mainly to the repatriation of seafarers amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Similarly, overseas Filipino cash remittances coursed through the banks rose for the second month in a row, posting an increment of 7.8 percent to $2.78 billion in July 2020 from $2.581 billion a year ago.

“This growth was mainly due to the 12.6-percent increase in land-based workers remittan­ces, but was slightly tempered by the 9.2-percent decrease in sea-based workers’ remittan­ces,” the central bank said.

For the period January–July 2020, cash remittances from land- and sea-based workers continued to be lower than their levels in 2019 by 1.5 percent to $13.23 billion from $13.43 billion, and 5.8 percent to $3.57 billion from $3.79 billion, respectively.

By country source, remittances for January-July 2020 from the United States, Japan, Singapore, Qatar and Taiwan were among the countries that registered continued growth, while declines were noted in Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates (UAE), Germany, Kuwait and the United Kingdom.

The highest share to total overseas Filipino remittances at 40.1 percent for January–July 2020 emanated from the United States, followed by Singapore, Saudi Arabia, Japan, the United Kingdom, UAE, Canada, Qatar, Hong Kong and Taiwan. INQ

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