MANILA - Around 174,000 Filipino migrant workers have been repatriated since April, Defense Sec. Delfin Lorenzana said Monday, as the country expects more OFWs to return home due to the global coronavirus pandemic.
"Ang repatriation ng ating OFWs tuluy-tuloy pa rin. Nai-stabilize na po natin 'yan. Ang (daily) average natin ngayon is 1,500 OFWs," Lorenzana said in a public briefing aired late evening.
The repatriation of OFWs started in March after COVID-19 rapidly spread worldwide, shutting down businesses and establishments as countries across the globe were placed under lockdown.
OFWs repatriated also include seafarers, many of whom work at shipping lines based in China, Japan, India, Canada and the United States.
Due to repatriation of Filipino migrant workers, cash remittances from them have dropped, according to the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP).
Cash remittances coursed through banks reached $2.106 billion (P103 billion) in May, down 19.3 percent from $2.609 billion the same month last year, the BSP said.
BSP Gov. Benjamin Diokno earlier said dollar remittances could contract by up to 5 percent due to the pandemic.