US dollars Image Credit: Reuters

Manila: Overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) sent $2.84 billion home in September, up 3.8 percent year over year, according to the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP).

The BSP released figures citing strong growth from both land-based and sea-based employees. Overall cash remittances increased by 3.1% to $23.83 billion in the first three quarters of this year compared to the same period in 2021, the Philippine News Agency reported Wednesday.

Remittances saw a 4.2 per cent increase in land-based worker inflows to $2.25 billion and a 2.5% increase in sea-based worker inflows to $59 million. The United States, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, and Qatar, accounted for the bulk of remittances during the first three quarters of this year, according to the BSP.

However, growth of remittances last September is slower than year-ago’s 5.2 per cent.

According to an economist, the ongoing increase in OFW remittances may be related to the need to fund more of their local spending as the economy continues to reopen as well as the need to pay for increased prices/inflation locally for OFWs and their dependents/families.

Due to the local currency's decline in value against the US dollar, the amount of remittances in pesos has gone up. However, this is offset by the ongoing increase in domestic inflation, which last October reached a nearly 14-year high of 7.7 per cent.

The seasonal surge in remittances during the Christmas season is anticipated to give the peso a further boost.