Pinoy sailors' remittance hits US$ 4.3-B mark in 2011

February 25, 2012 10:56 pm 

MANILA, Feb. 25 — The Trade Union Congress of the Philippines (TUCP) announced that Filipino merchant mariners, serving overseas, have remitted a total of US$ 4.340 billion in 2011 or US$ 534 million higher than the US$ 3.806 billion they remitted in 2010.

Remittances from seafarers advanced nearly three times faster compared to the cash inflows from land-based migrant Filipino workers in 2011, according to TUCP president and former Sen. Ernesto Herrera.

“The remittance growth was due to increased deployment, coupled with the dollar’s decline,” Herrera said.

He added that the US currency’s depreciation meant that every dollar sent home by sailors produced fewer pesos.

“Sailors had to send more dollars to their families here just to provide them the same amount of pesos they were receiving the prior year for living expenses,” he pointed out.

Based on Bangko Sentral ng Piliinas (BSP) data, the peso averaged P43.31 to one US dollar in 2011 compared to P45.11 in 2010. Thus, every US dollar yielded 4.15 percent less pesos last year.

The Philippines has been the world’s chief supplier of sailors since 1987. Some 375,000 Filipinos comprise one-fourth of the estimated 1.5 million merchant mariners worldwide.

The top 10 sources of remittances from Filipino sailors in 2011 were: the United States (US$ 2.437 billion); Norway (US$ 294.076 million); the United Kingdom (US$ 285.754 million); Japan (US$ 268.414 million); Germany (US$ 211.916 million); Greece (US$ 192.527 million); Singapore (US$ 175.312 million); Hong Kong (US$ 72.341 million); Cyprus (US$ 53.294 million); and the Netherlands (US$ 44.889 million).

The US$ 534-million jump in remittances from sailors accounted for 40 percent of the cumulative increase in cash transfers from all Filipino workers abroad, based both on land and sea, last year. (PNA)



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