Today’s news item in the Phil. Daily Inquirer, DOLE’s Bureau of Labor and Employment Statistics Director Criselda Sy cited that Overseas Filipinos remittances have grown substantially over the last three decades. Sy said, a World Bank report in 2005 which ranked the Philippines fourth in terms of remittances from overseas nationals behind China, India and Mexico.
She also disclosed BLES’s other observations based on remittance data of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas and the National Statistical Coordination Board.
.During the period 1975-2005, the yearly inflow of remittances grew by hundreds-fold, increasing from just $103 million to $10.689 billion, reflecting an average geometric growth rate of 16.7 per annum.
.While it took exactly 15 years (1975-1990) for remittances to reach $1 billion, it took just another 15 years (1991-2005) to breach $10 billion.
.Prior to 1996, the share of OFW remittances to GNP had been modest (at less than 5 percent) and almost stagnant. In 1996, the figure edged up to 5.1 percent, growing steadily until it reached 9.7 percent in 2002 and, by 2003 and onwards, to more than than 10 percent of GNP.
.Between 1999 and 2004, earnings from foreign or nonresident investors amounted to P306 billion, while total inflows of remittances reached P2.4 billion.
.In the same period, remittances were roughly one-third of the country’s earnings from its top five export products. There were about P7.4 billion in export receipts compared to P2.4 billion in remittances.
“This robust growth [of remittances] underscores the important role played by overseas employment in the growth of the nation’s economy both as a source of wealth and as a reliable source of foreign exchange that supports a stable exchange rate for the Philippine peso,” Sy said.