Personal Remittances Increase to $2.6B in September 2016; 9M 2016 Level Reaches $22.1B

Manila—(PHStocks)—Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP)—Personal remittances from overseas Filipinos (OFs) totaled US$2.6 billion in September 2016, increasing by 6.3 percent year-on-year. On a cumulative basis, personal remittances in the first nine months of 2016 reached US$22.1 billion, higher by 4.7 percent than the level recorded in the same period last year, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas Governor Amando M. Tetangco Jr. said. Personal remittances were comprised largely of transfers from land-based workers with work contracts of one year or more, amounting to US$17.2 billion. Meanwhile, compensation of sea-based and land-based workers with work contracts of less than one year (excluding their expenditures abroad) aggregated US$4.6 billion.

Cash remittances from OFs coursed through banks posted a 6.7 percent growth in September 2016 to reach US$2.4 billion. Top countries that contributed to the growth in cash remittances in September were the United States (US), United Arab Emirates (UAE), Japan, Qatar, Taiwan and Kuwait. Remittances from land-based workers increased by 11.9 percent during the month, compensating for the 10.5 percent decline in sea-based workers’ remittances. The declining remittances from sea-based workers may be attributed to stiffer competition in the supply of seafarers. A growing number of officers and ratings are recruited from East Asia (China and India) and Eastern Europe (Ukraine, Croatia, and Latvia).

On a year-to-date basis, cash remittances totaled US$20.0 billion, representing a 4.8 percent increase from the comparable level last year. Land-based workers’ cash remittances grew by 7.1 percent to reach US$15.8 billion. Meanwhile, cash remittances from sea-based workers declined slightly by 2.9 percent to US$4.2 billion. Cash remittances coming from the US, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Singapore, the United Kingdom (UK), Japan, Qatar, Kuwait, Hong Kong, and Germany comprise 80 percent of the total cash remittances in the first nine months of the year.

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