Remittances grow 6.2% to over $2-B in May
It was the second straight month that remittances hit the $2-billion mark

STAYING STRONG. Personal remittances from overseas Filipino workers hit $2 billion for the second straight month in May as more Filipinos get jobs overseas. Photo by AFP

MANILA, Philippines – Remittances hit the $2-billion mark for the second consecutive month in May amid sustained demand for Filipino workers overseas, the central bank reported Monday, July 15.

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) said in a statement that personal remittances – in cash and in kind – amounted to $2.1 billion in May, up 6.2% from $1.9 billion in the same month of 2012. In April, remittances rose by an annual 7% to $2 billion.

May’s figure brought the total for the first 5 months of 2013 to $9.7 billion, 6.4% higher than the previous year’s $9.1 billion.

“The steady increase in personal remittances was driven largely by remittance flows from land-based overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) with work contracts of one year or more,” the BSP said.

Cash remittances alone grew 5.6% in January to May from a year ago to $8.8 billion. Most of these came from the US, Saudi Arabia, United Kingdom, United Arab Emirates, Singapore, Canada and Japan.

“Remittances remained robust due to sustained strong demand for skilled Filipino manpower overseas,” noted the central bank.

Latest data from the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration showed one-third of 431,394 approved job orders in the first 5 months were already processed. These job orders came from employers in Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Hong Kong and Qatar.

The BSP said the opening of more remittance centers abroad also made it easier for OFWs to send money to their families at home. –

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