Philippines: Remittances in March grow at fastest pace in over six years
May 15, 2015
In March, cash remittances from Overseas Filipino Workers (OFW) increased 11.3% over the same month last year, reaching USD 2.1 billion. The print market a significant acceleration over February’s milder 4.2% increase and the strongest rate of growth since December 2009. The overall trend improved as remittances totaled USD 24.6 billion in the 12 months up to Mach, coming in slightly above February’s USD 24.4 billion and marking yet another record high. The increase represented a 5.7% expansion over the same period last year, which exceeded February’s 5.4% rise.
Remittances, which accounted for approximately 8.5% of GDP in 2014, are an important source of income for many Filipino families and thus a key driver of private consumption. According to the Central Bank, land-based workers accounted for the larger share of remittances, while a smaller proportion of remittances came from sea-based workers. Remittances mainly came from the United States, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.