Increase legal channels of remittance


Remittances to Philippines reached an all-time high of over $20 billion last year as demand for Filipino workers remained strong even amid economic and political challenges confronting labor markets in the West and the Middle East.

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas reported that remittances of $20.1 billion for 2011 marked a 7.2-percent rise over the $18.3 billion registered the previous year. The growth in remittances came about as job orders for Filipino workers from foreign employers and that includes Saudi Arabia.

The biggest sources of remittances last year were the United States, Canada, Saudi Arabia, United Kingdom, Japan, United Arab Emirates, Singapore, Italy, Germany, and Norway.

The Banko Sentral ng Pilipinas said “Cash transfers from overseas Filipinos continued to be a major contributor in stimulating domestic demand”.

Despite global economic crisis, OFW Remittances were credited for helping the Philippine economy grow in 2011 even as exports income weaken amid dwindling demand from countries experiencing economic crisis, including those countries called “economic giants” mainly Europe and the United States.

The Philippines last year is the fourth-biggest recipient of remittances next to China, India, and Mexico.

But despite of this good news there is still impending problem that needs to be rectified. Estimated remittances passing through alternative channels or improper channels had reach from 25 to 70 percent of the total OFW remittances according to BSP. Let’s imagine those percentage if we use the proper channel in sending remittances to our love ones. Thus – the remittance programs for OFWs of  the just concluded launching of Banco De Oro and Arab National Bank Telemoney Remittance Services in the Kingdom and so with other Philippine banking institutions had forged a tie-up arrangements with foreign bank hosting Filipino workers in the promotion of greater use of formal remittance systems by Overseas Filipinos.

To strengthen the remittance programs of our government as well as the private banking sectors and in response to increase legal channels of remittance, We OFWs, reiterated our previous demands addressed to our Government and banking institutions to look into ways for the creation of an OFW Stabilization Fund and or special exchange rate for OFW remittances.  In this way, we can lessen or perhaps eradicate totally the remittances passing through improper means. – by: BongA

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