Remittances via banks at $13.8 B in H1

Remigio Civitarese
Agosto 16, 2017

The Philippines is one of the world's largest recipients of remittances, with millions of Filipinos working overseas sending home money that helps power domestic consumption, a key driver of economic growth.

The BSP said the continued increase in remittances in June was supported by stable demand for skilled Filipino workers abroad, citing data from the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration, which indicated a 50-percent hike in the number of Filipino workers deployed in the first half of the year.

Data from the Central Bank showed cash remittances to the country saw a 5.7-percent growth in June this year from its previous year's volume, hitting $2.47 billion for the month alone. For June only, personal transfers went up by 6.8 percent year-on-year to $2.8 billion.

Espenilla said growth was boosted largely by the 5.5 percent increase in personal remittances from land-based workers with long-term contracts, whose remittances comprised 77.3 percent of total personal remittances.

"It was also supported by the 1.7 percent rise in remittances from sea-based and land-based workers with short-term contracts", the central bank added.

Personal remittances include personal transfers or "padala".

Remittances transferred through bank networks reached $13.8 billion as of end-June, up 4.7 percent compared to the same time past year of $13.19 billion, data from the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) show. Land-based workers sent $1.9 billion during the month, up 3.8 percent.

"The sustained increase in remittances was supported by stable demand for skilled Filipinos overseas", Espenilla said.

The United States (US), United Arab Emirates (UAE), Hong Kong and Singapore were the major contributors to the growth in cash remittances during the month.

The US and the UAE each contributed 1.9 percentage points to the overall growth of 5.7 percent, while Hong Kong and Singapore contributed a combined 1.1 percentage points.

For the January-June remittances, specifically those transacted through the banks, 80 percent came from the US, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Singapore, Japan, United Kingdom, Qatar, Kuwait, Germany and Hong Kong.

The remittances from these countries accounted for nearly 80 percent of total cash remittances in the first semester of 2017.

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