Philippines: Remittances decelerate further in February
April 16, 2013
In February, remittances from Overseas Filipino Workers (OFW) increased 6.0% over the same month last year to USD 1.7 billion, which was below the 8.0% expansion observed in January. As a result of the lower annual reading, the trend points downwards, with remittances adding USD 21.6 billion in the last 12 months up to February, a 6.5% expansion over the same period last year (January: +6.1% year-on-year).
According to the Central Bank, "the steady deployment of overseas Filipino workers remained a primary contributory factor to the growth in remittance flows". Moreover, the continued improvement of services by bank and non-bank remittance providers allows to "capture of a larger share of the global remittance market". Remittances account for approximately 9% of GDP and are an important source of income for many Filipino families. Given its significance to the economy, OFW funds sent from abroad are one of the key drivers of private consumption in the country.
FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panellists expect private consumption to grow 5.5% in 2013, which is unchanged from the previous month's projection. For 2014, the panel expects private consumption to expand 5.4%.