October OFW remittances new record high at $2.224 billion

By: Bianca Cuaresma

Cash sent home by Filipino migrant workers continued to surge as the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) recorded the highest monthly cash-remittance volume in October this year.

The BSP said on Monday that cash-remittances—or money sent by overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) to the Philippines through banks and accredited financial institutions —totaled $2.224 billion in October. This was the highest monthly remittance volume sent by OFWs since the central bank started to record remittance flows.

The October remittance rate topped the previous record monthly remittance volume seen in December last year, totaling $2.173 billion. This also represented a 7-percent expansion, from $2.079 billion worth of remittances in October last year.

The remittances pushed the 10-month volume to $19.869 billion, adding billions in fresh funds for consumption activities. This development, the BSP said, was owed to the “steady demand for skilled and professional Filipino manpower.”

The January-to-October volume of remittances was 6.2 percent higher than remittances of only $18.716 billion in the same 10-month period last year.

Cash remittances from both land-based and sea-based workers grew during the period—reaching $15.2 billion from land-based Filipino workers and $4.7 billion from sea-based Filipinos.

Remittances during the month flowed from the United States, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom, Singapore, Japan, Hong Kong and Canada.

The central bank also cited preliminary data from the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration showing 768,741 job orders reached in the January-to-October period. About 40 percent of these were processed job orders for service, production and professional, technical and related workers in Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Kuwait, Taiwan and Qatar.

Meanwhile, personal remittances—both in cash and in kind—hit $22.02 billion during the period, or 6.7 percent more than last year.

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