Duterte increases OFW assistance funds to about P1-B

Trishia Billones, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jul 24 2017 07:27 PM

MANILA - President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday said he has ordered a budget increase in assistance funds of overseas Filipino workers.

"They are our heroes. They and their families have sacrificed much for the country. We all know how a large part of our economy comes from their remittances," he said in his State of the Nation Address.

"That is why to ensure that their rights are protected, I order the increase of our assistance to the OFWs from P400 million to more than P1 billion," he added.

Remittances from roughly 2 million Filipinos working overseas account for around 10 percent of gross domestic product, which has grown at one of the fastest paces in the world in recent years.

In May this year, remittances reached $2.31 billion. This is 5.5 percent higher compared to the same month last year.

"We have been hard at war at securing the rights and welfare of our OFWs," said Duterte.