Money sent home monthly by overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) rose to $2.58 billion in May, resurging from a 15-month low in April largely on the back of remittances from land-based workers with long-term contracts, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) said.
Data released by the Bangko Sentral on Monday showed personal remittances increased by 11.6 percent from an inflow of $2.31 billion in April and by 7.1 percent from an inflow of $2.41 billion in May 2016.
Personal remittances from land-based workers with work contracts of one year or more grew by 5.9 percent, to compensate for the 0.6 percent decline in remittances from sea-based and land-based workers with work contracts of less than one year on the same period a year ago, the central bank explained.
For the first five months of the year, remittances reached $12.61 billion, up 5.2 percent from $11.99 billion a year earlier.
Personal remittances are transfers in cash or in kind, as well as capital transfers between households.
Cash remittances coursed through banks totaled $2.31 billion in May, up 5.5 percent year-on-year from $2.18 billion. In April, cash remittances totaled $2.08 billion.
“This was boosted by the remittances from land-based (at $1.8 billion) and sea-based (at $0.5 billion) workers, representing 6.2 percent and 3 percent increase, respectively,” the monetary authority said.
By country source, the primary contributors to growth in cash remittances were the United Arab Emirates, Canada, Saudi Arabia and the United States.
Those four countries, along with Singapore, Japan, the United Kingdom, Qatar, Kuwait and Germany, accounted for about 80 percent of the overseas Filipino workers’ total cash remittances to the Philippines during the first five months of 2017, it added.
For the first five months of 2017, cash remittances recorded 4.5 percent growth from the level posted in the same period a year ago, reaching $11.34 billion.