The Philippines’ estimated 10 million citizens abroad once more stepped in to buoy the local economy in the middle of a crisis, driving a late third quarter surge in dollar remittance that helped ward off a worst case scenario earlier feared by the central bank.
In a statement, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) said personal remittances from overseas Filipinos amounted to $2.888 billion in September 2020, which was higher by 9.1 percent than the $2.648 billion recorded in the same month in 2019.
This brought the total personal remittances for the first nine months of 2020 to $24.302 billion. At this level, the contraction in cumulative remittances for the first nine months narrowed to 1.4 percent from 2.6 percent in August 2020.
By country source, cash remittance for the first nine months of 2020 from the United States, Singapore, Qatar, Hong Kong and Taiwan registered growth, while a decline was noted in Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Germany, Kuwait and the United Kingdom.
The US posted the highest share of total remittances at 40.1 percent, followed by Singapore, Saudi Arabia, Japan, the UK, the UAE, Canada, Hong Kong, Qatar, and Taiwan.The combined remittances from these countries accounted for 78.8 percent of total cash remittances.
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