The OFW remittances have increased 2 percent to reach $8.65 billion in the first quarter, according to the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP).
The OFW remittances registered growth in March to increase more than two percent in the first quarter. As per the data the personal remittances increased by 2.3 percent to $8.65 billion in the first quarter from $8.45 billion in the same quarter last year.
The personal remittances grew by 3.1 percent to $2.89 billion from $2.8 billion in the same month last year.
According to the BSP, the increase in personal remittances in March was after 3.7 percent rise in remittances sent by land-based workers with work contracts of one year or more. There was a rise of $2.19 billion from $2.12 billion a year ago. Also, 1.4 percent increase in the amount of money sent by sea and land-based workers was registered in the case of those with work contracts of less than one year to $625 million from $616 million.
The BSP said that there was a growth in cash remittances from the US, Japan, Singapore, Taiwan, and Saudi Arabia.
USA showed the highest share of overall remittances at 41.5 percent from January to March, followed by Singapore, Saudi Arabia, Japan, the United Kingdom, the United Arab Emirates, Canada, Taiwan, Qatar and Malaysia.
The combined remittances from the top 10 countries was 79 percent of total cash remittances in the first quarter.
Michael Ricafort, chief economist at Rizal Commercial Banking Corp., said OFW remittances remains a “bright spot for the Philippine economy” and “Global economic recovery prospects somewhat improved as many countries around the word also further reopened their economies toward greater normalcy as fundamentally justified by recent significant easing in COVID cases since February and March after the spike in Omicron variant in January, thereby helping improve employment prospects for some OFWs.”