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PROTECT OFWS’ REMITTANCES – VILLAR

Senator Cynthia Villar filed Senate Bill No. 1014 or the “Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) Remittance Protection Act” which seeks to protect the remittance of our migrant workers.

A known advocate of OFW, Villar has been crafting measures to ensure the protection and welfare of OFWs while working abroad, as well as their families.

In filing the bill, the veteran legislator cited the state’s declaration of policy in recognizing the significant contribution of OFWs to the national economy through their foreign exchange remittances.

As such, the seasoned lawmaker noted that the state should adopt measures to protect the hard-earned money they remit home against usurious interests and exorbitant fees charged by financial institutions that deplete the value of their remittances.

“The state should adopt measures to protect the hard-earned money they remit home against usurious interests and exorbitant fees.”

“The state shall also provide them and their families adequate education and training on financial literacy, such as financial planning and planning of finances, or savings,” the lady senator said.

She stressed these would help ensure a source of livelihood even after their employment abroad.

Furthermore, Villar said her bill intends to lessen the burden of OFWs in sending remittances to their families by minimizing the amount the remittance fees imposed by intermediaries and deducting tax to intermediaries based on the services rendered to OFWs.

She emphasized that remittances from working abroad are a dependable source of funds for our OFWs and their families.

In 2021, Villar related that cash remittances sent by OFWs hit a new high, reflecting the improvement in the global economy amid the coronavirus disease.

Based on the data released by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), remittances coursed through banks rose by 5.1% or $31.418 billion in 2021 from $29.903 billion in 2020.

The United States at 40% was the biggest source of remittances in 2021. It is followed by Singapore, Saudi Arabia, Japan, the United Kingdom, the United Arab Emirates, Canada, Taiwan, Qatar and South Korea.

These countries, she said, account for more than 3/4 or 79.8% of cash remittances during the year.

“The inflow of remittances from overseas Filipinos remained resilient amid the lingering COVID pandemic.”

According to Villar, the contribution of migrant workers to the Philippine economy is greatly appreciated and the inflow of remittances from overseas Filipinos remained resilient amid the lingering COVID pandemic.

Due to high paying jobs, she said many Filipinos aspire to work abroad.

This also gives them the opportunity to secure a better quality of life and future for their families and loved ones.

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