OFW’s remittances could increase by up to 7% this year
MANILA, Philippines – Cross-border digital payment service provider WorldRemit sees Filipino Overseas Workers (OFW) remittances rebound, growing six to seven percent this year after falling 0.8 percent last year due to travel to host countries amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
WorldRemit Philippines Country Director Earl Melivo told STAR that the resilience of overseas Filipinos has been proven repeatedly in the past, including during the ongoing global health crisis.
“The current pandemic is even further testimony to this, from the first months of containment in 2020 until today despite various lockdowns and reintroductions of different restrictions in many host countries where OFWs are located,” said Melivo.
WorldRemit’s projection is better than the 4% increase in personal and cash remittances projected by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) for 2021 and 2022.
The latest central bank data showed OFW’s remittances rose double-digit for the second consecutive month in May as travel restrictions eased in host countries.
Personal remittances, including all current cash or in-kind transfers by OFWs as well as other household-to-household transfers between Filipinos who have migrated abroad and their families in the Philippines, increased by 6 , 6% to reach $ 13.68 billion in the first five months. of the year compared to $ 12.83 billion in the same period last year.
Likewise, remittances from banks rose 6.3% to $ 12.28 billion from $ 11.55 billion in the same period last year.
Melivo said remittances from the United States, including Guam, South Korea, Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwan and Canada, would continue to grow this year, while volumes from countries hosts like Saudi Arabia, Germany, UK and New Zealand are currently experiencing some rebound.
Countries of concern include Japan, Australia, Italy, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates due to continued decline in global remittances, while Hong Kong and Qatar are said to continue to record further declines unless that OFW redeployments be accelerated.
“Amid new or renewed restrictions in many host countries, OFWs will simply continue to send money home and, where permitted, Filipino deployments will continue,” said Melivo.
Remittances have helped strengthen the Philippine economy, helping recipient families improve their lives and regain financial independence. In addition to meeting their basic needs, remittances also help provide children with access to education.
Outside of the Christmas season, OFW’s remittances also peak at the start of the new school year.
The Philippines has always been WorldRemit’s premier landing hall. Since 2011, he has established strategic partnerships enabling him to transfer money to over 70 banks and non-banks, including major Filipino mobile wallets and withdrawals at over 29,000 locations nationwide.
Likewise, Melivo also downplayed the impact of the inclusion of the Philippines in the Paris-based Dirty Money Watchdog Financial Action Task Force (FATF) gray list on June 25 on remittances. OFW.
“For OFW remittances, there shouldn’t be any negative effect that would cause overall volumes to drop. However, enhanced measures on customer scrutiny by money services companies like WorldRemit and its Filipino payment partners are expected, ”Melivo said.
He said the PASB would continue to take a closer look at how to deal with their clients’ onboarding procedures, particularly around Know Your Customer (KYC) processes and anti-money laundering related controls and processes. ‘silver.