Money sent home by overseas Filipino workers recovered in September 2018, rising by 2.3 percent to $2.237 billion from $2.186 billion a year ago, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas Deputy Governor Maria Almasara Cyd Tuano-Amador said Thursday.
The 2.3-percent expansion was a turnaround from a 0.9-percent decline a month ago. The figure brought cash remittances in the first nine months to $21.294 billion, up 2.5 percent from $20.781 billion on year.
However, the $2.237-billion value of remittances in September was the lowest in a year since $2.186 billion in the same month of 2017.
“Over the nine-month period, cash remittances from both land-based [$16.8 billion] and sea-based [$4.5 billion] workers grew by 2.2 percent and 3.5 percent year-on-year, respectively,” Amador said.
Over 79 percent of the total cash remittances in the first nine months came from the United States, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Singapore, Japan, United Kingdom, Qatar, Canada, Germany and Hong Kong.
Meanwhile, the countries that contributed to the increase in remittances in September were Canada, the US and Taiwan.
Personal remittances, which include non-cash items, also rose by 2 percent in September to $2.490 billion from $2.442 billion a year ago. This brought personal remittances in the first nine months to $23.713 billion, up 2.4 percent from $23.164 billion on year.
Amador said the growth in personal remittances during the first nine months was backed by inflows from land-based workers with work contracts of one year or more, which grew 2.2 percent year-on-year.
Similarly, the growth in personal remittances was complemented by flows from sea- and land-based workers with contracts of less than one year, which rose by 3.5 percent year-on-year, Amador said.
Money sent home by overseas Filipinos in 2017 reached a record $28.06 billion, up 4.3 percent from $26.90 billion a year ago and exceeding the Bangko Sentral’s conservative 4-percent growth target for the year.
The higher cash remittances in 2017 was supported by the increase in transfers from both land-based and sea-based workers by 4 percent and 5.4 percent, respectively.
This year, Bangko Sentral projected a conservative 4-percent growth for remittances.