ADLAIDE, AUSTRALIA—Filipinos in two major Pacific countries are sending lesser remittances during the six months of 2017 compared to the same period a year ago.
Data from the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas’ comparative January-June remittance data show that remittances from Australia and New Zealand slowed down by some 13.7 percent and 12.8 percent, respectively.
Filipinos based in Australia sent home US$257.63 million as of June 30, below the US$298.595 million over the same six-month period a year ago. The same decline can be seen from New Zealand-originated Filipino remittances: US$51.589 million (2017) versus US$59.152 million.
Both the Australian dollar to the Philippine peso has been depreciating since June 2016: from PhP33.33 in January 2016 to today’s PhP37.61. Usually, when the home country currency depreciates (i.e., nominal value is higher), it becomes an incentive for migrants abroad to remit more money [see Figure 1].