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Filipinos Sent Home A Record $17 Billion in 2009

GMAnews.TV, Posted: Feb 17, 2010

MANILA--Millions of Filipinos working abroad sent home a record $17.3 billion last year, boosting local consumption and the economy amid the global slump, according to the Philippine central bank.

Remittances grew by 5.6 percent from $16.4 billion in the prior year and accounted for 10.8 percent of the country's economic output. The central bank traced steady remittance flows to the sustained demand for Filipino engineers, medical practitioners and teachers.

It also said countries with which the Philippines has bilateral deals continued to open up employment opportunities abroad for Filipinos. The expansion of remittance service here and abroad also fueled growth.

The end-2009 remittance growth exceeded the central bank's 4 percent target. Remittances from sea-based and land-based workers rose by 12.1 percent and 4.2 percent, respectively. For December alone, remittances grew by 11.4 percent to their highest level of $1.6 billion.

Major remittance sources for the full year were the United States, Canada, Saudi Arabia, Britain, Japan, Singapore, United Arab Emirates (UAE), Italy and Germany.

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