OFW remittances reach $11.4B from Jan-July

MANILA, Philippines—Remittances sent by overseas Filipinos totalled $11.4 billion in the first seven months this year, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) reported.

The BSP said that money sent home by overseas Filipino workers with last July’s inflows have also reached $1.7 billion.

Data released by BSP show that inflows last July alone was up by 6.1 percent against a year ago’s $ 1.62 billion while the end-July level rose by 6.3 percent from the $10.7 billion same period last year.

Bulk of these inflows came from the United States, Canada, Saudi Arabia, United Kingdom, Japan, Singapore, United Arab Emirates, Italy, and Germany, all of which account for 82.8 percent of remittances that passed through the formal channel.

BSP governor Amando Tetangco Jr. attributed the robust remittance inflows to the continued demand for OFWs.

Citing Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) records, the central bank chief said processed job orders for August expanded by 19.5 percent to 26,504 bringing the year-to-date figure to 162,574.

“The processed job orders are expected to match the requirements for production, service, professional, technical and other related workers in Saudi Arabia, UAE, Taiwan, Qatar, Kuwait, and Hong Kong, among others,” he said.

He also cited that the number of land-based workers with processed contracts who are waiting to be deployed grew by 24.2 percent to 313,709 from 252,666 in July 2010. While the number of sea-based workers grew by 5.5 percent to 280,348 from 265,656 same period last year.

Relatively, the BSP chief is confident that growth of remittances for the rest of the year will not be greatly affected by Standard & Poor’s downgrade of US’ credit rating, the prolonged sovereign debt crisis in the Euro area, and the social unrest in the Middle East and North Africa.

“The favorable remittance outlook is expected to be supported by the ongoing geographical diversification of deployment of Filipino workers and efforts by the government to redeploy displaced workers in crisis-affected countries,” he said.

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