The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) has updated its remittances growth projection for 2021 to six percent, up from its previous four percent estimate as economies where overseas Filipinos are located have started to open up.
The last time overseas Filipinos’ remittances – these are the bank-transferred cash remittances – were expanding at the six-percent level or higher was in 2014 when it registered an annual 7.2 percent growth.
For 2022, however, the BSP’s remittances projection returns to its previous annual four percent growth.
BSP Managing Director Zeno R. Abenoja, during the virtual quarterly balance of payments press briefing on Friday, said they have decided that “probably we’ll go back to medium term growth trend of about four percent mainly because of uncertainty.”
Abenoja remained confident that remittances will continue to bounce back after contracting by 0.8 percent in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The BSP said the projected “sustained strengthening of advanced economies in 2022 bode well for the country’s prospects for trade and investments as well as overseas Filipinos remittances.”
The BSP expects higher remittances growth due to the following: increased global demand for foreign workers as host economies transition to recovery mode; and enhanced access to digital financial services to facilitate remittance transfers.
For the first seven months of the year, cash remittances grew by 5.8 percent year-on-year to $17.77 billion from $16.80 billion same time in 2020.
For the month of July only, cash remittances went up by 2.5 percent year-on-year to $2.85 billion from $2.78 billion.