— CNN Philippines (@cnnphilippines) 24 October 2017
The government has a promise to the millions of OFWs abroad—faster and cheaper services in sending their remittances in the Philippines through the Overseas Filipino Bank (OFB), created by President Rodrigo Duterte through an executive order.
The OFB will be subsidized by the Land Bank of the Philippines, a government-owned and controlled corporation.
According to Land Bank President and CEO Alex Buenaventura, families of overseas Filipinos can withdraw remittances from Land Bank's 423 branches and automated teller machines (ATMs) across the country and do other transactions as well.
OFWs who has existing Land Bank account do not have to open another account with the OFB.
There will only be one OFB in the country at Liwasang Bonifacio in Manila.
OFWs abroad can send money home using their smartphone.
Buenaventura also added that sending money is faster and cheaper through the OFB.
Overseas Filipinos will be charged $5 per $100 sent, he said. This is almost the same as the rates of private remittance companies.
Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III said the OFB can even offer free service for overseas Filipinos. The government also eyes low interest rates for loan packages, possibly at 2.5 percent per year.
The OFB will have representative offices in various consular offices in the world. The first to open will be in Dubai in January 2018. However, the representatives are there not to do any transactions but to market their products (deposit/remittance products, loans, investments, and savings program) to the OFWs.
He also said that OFWs can buy preferred shares, a kind of stock ownership which allow them to earn more.
Meanwhile, some OFWs are doubtful that sending money through the OFW bank will be cheaper based on its $5 for every $100 rate.
Source: CNN Philippines