Pinoy sailors sent home $888M in Q1, up 11%
Filipino sailors on foreign oceangoing vessels remitted $888.949 million in the first quarter, the Trade Union Congress of the Philippines (TUCP) reported.
The amount was 11.04 percent higher—or $88.414 million more—than the $800.535 million they sent over the same three-month period last year.
TUCP secretary-general Ernesto Herrera said the 11.04-percent growth in the remittance was nearly double the 5.96-percent increase in the cash sent home by land-based migrant Filipino workers in the first quarter.
“We remain bullish overall about the potential growth in remittances from Filipino sailors in the months ahead,” said Herrera, former chairman of the Senate Committee on Labor, Employment and Human-Resources Development.
“However, we are also deeply worried about Greece’s lingering debt crisis, which could depress economic conditions as well as shipping activity in Europe,” said Herrera, whose labor center includes the Philippine Seafarers’ Union.
Of the 10 biggest sources of remittances from Filipino sailors, six are European countries, Herrera said.
The top 10 sources of Filipino sailors’ remittances, according to the former senator, are the United States, Japan, Norway, Germany, the United Kingdom, Singapore, Greece, the Netherlands, Hong Kong and Cyprus.
Remittances from Filipino sailors based in Greece were still up 18 percent in the first quarter to $34.7 million versus $29.3 million a year ago.
But Herrera also noted that remittances from Filipino sailors based in Norway, the Netherlands, Cyprus, Denmark, Ireland and Sweden were actually down an average of 20.81 percent.
Last week the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas reported that total remittances from all migrant Filipino workers, whether based on land or at sea, reached $4.339 billion in the first quarter, up 6.96 percent from $4.057 billion over the same period in 2009.
In 2009 Filipino sailors sent home a record $3.4 billion, up $366 million, or 12.06 percent, from $3.034 billion in 2008.
Remittances from Filipino sailors have more than doubled since 2005, when they sent home only $1.669 billion. BusinessMirror