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Philippine senate fine-tunes remedial law on safeguarding OFW remittances

SEVERAL Senate committees will join forces to fine-tune a remedial legislation updating safeguards to protect over $30-billion annual remittances and money transfers sent home by overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) annually.

The Senate Committees on Banks, Financial Institutions and Currencies and on Labor, and Employment and Human Resources Development will hold a virtual joint hearing on July 22 to tackle the legislation.

This came following the call of Senator Grace L. Poe, Banks Committee Chairman, for “heightened protection for OFW remittances and money transfers.”

Describing the “consumer expectations survey” by Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) that highlighted 96 percent households needing these remittances for food and other needs, Poe stressed on financial institutions, including banks and money transfer companies, as well as State regulators to protect the OFWs remittances.

“Krusyal and perang ipinapadala ng ating mga OFW para maitawid ang kani-kanilang pamilya at ang ating ekonomiya sa gitna ng pandemya. Ang patuloy na pagdaloy nito ay makapagpapagaan sa epekto ng pagkainti ng foreign investment at paglabas ng salaping pambayad sa forign debt,” said Poe.

Noting BSP data highlighting remittances of OFWs at $30.1 billion in 2019, she said remittances in 2020 only dipped slightly to $29.9 billion – despite the impact of COVID-19 on the global economy.

Staff Report

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