Dip in remittances seen to reach 2.5 percent this year
Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas sees temporary dip in remittances
MANILA – With over 60,000 overseas Filipino workers back home and the projected return of more repatriates, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas Governor Benjamin E. Diokno said they revised their projections of 2 percent growth in remittances year-on-year to a fall by 5 percent this year.
Speaking at the midday press briefing hosted by Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque, Governor Diokno said most of the overseas workers who have returned home were working on cruise ships which have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Even those in the freight business will be affected as trade is much lower and they have been affected. From the last year’s US$30 billion, we see US$28.5 billion this year,” Governor Diokno said.
He added the losses in remittances will be offset by the dynamism in the business process outsourcing due to an increase in transactions utilizing digital technology.
“Don’t be bothered because this will only be temporary,” he added. He explained the Philippines is poised to recover from the temporary loss in remittances should there be more investments in Nursing, Medicine and Computer Science.
He said nurses and doctors are in demand abroad along with computer science graduates as the Philippines has a median age of 24.
“We will recover soon,” he said.
On another issue, Governor Diokno said Wirecard’s missing € 1.9 billion never reached the Philippine financial system. He said the allegations that the amount was in two of the country’s biggest banks, Banco de Oro and Bank of Philippine Islands was to cover the perpetrator’s track.
“Both banks said they didn’t know anything about the missing funds and they never had any business with Wirecard. Investigations are being made by the National Bureau of Investigation and the Anti-Money Laundering Secretariat,” he added. (Melo M. Acuña)
BSO Governor Benjamin E. Diokno (left). (Screen grab from PTV4)