Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas in Manila, the Philippines. Photo: Google Maps

The remittances of Filipino migrant workers from the United Arab Emirates and the Middle East have decreased due to the large number of repatriations this year.

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), the central money authority of the Philippines, said the repatriation of thousands of Filipino migrant workers contributed to a decline in money sent to the Philippines in August this year, The Rahnuma Daily reported.

The BSP said cash remittances dropped about 0.9% compared with last year’s data, from US$2.499 billion in August 2017 to $2.476 in August this year. About 10 million Filipinos work overseas and are usually the breadwinners for their families back home, providing most of the household budgets and contributing nearly 70% of overall national output.

“The countries that contributed to the decline in August 2018 are the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia and Qatar,” BSP said.

Cash sent from the UAE fell by 36.4%, from $275.31 million in August 2017 to $175.02 million in August this year, while cash remittances from Saudi Arabia fell from $228.15 million to $180.9 million in the same period.

The Philippine government has conducted mass repatriations of Filipinos from the UAE, mostly victims of illegal recruitment. More than 1,000 Filipinos were granted an amnesty and set home without having to pay overstaying fines.