Higher dollar remittances from land-based Pinoy workers in July offset losses from seafarers
MANILA, Philippines — Dollar remittances from expatriate Filipinos grew for the second consecutive month in July due mainly to the increase in the 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 $3.085 billion in July 2020 from $2.867 billion in July 2019.
This brought the total remittances for the first seven months of 2020 to $18.658 billion, or 2.4 percent lower than the $19.119 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 sea-based workers amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
Similarly, overseas Filipino cash remittances that are coursed through the banks rose for the second month in a row, posting an increment of 7.8 percent to $2.783 billion in July 2020 from $2.581 billion in July 2019.
“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, the cumulative decline in cash remittances decelerated to 2.4 percent from 4.2 percent in June.
Cash remittances from land-based and sea-based workers continued to be lower than their levels in 2019 by 1.5 percent to $13.232 billion from $13.429 billion, and 5.8 percent to $3.57 billion from $3.789 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, UAE, Germany, Kuwait, and the UK.
The highest share to total overseas Filipino remittances at 40.1 percent for January–July 2020 emanated from the US, followed by Singapore, Saudi Arabia, Japan, the United Kingdom, United Arab Emirates, Canada, Qatar, Hongkong, and Taiwan.
The combined remittances from these countries accounted for 78.9 percent of total cash remittances.
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