Lapid wants credit assistance program for OFWs | Inquirer News

Lapid wants credit assistance program for OFWs

/ 02:05 PM August 30, 2023

MANILA, Philippines — Senator Lito Lapid filed a bill pushing for establishing a Credit Assistance Program for Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) to assist them in paying for their families’ needs and other expenses.

According to Lapid in a statement on Wednesday, Senate Bill No. 2390, or “An Act Establishing a Credit Assistance Program for Overseas Filipino Workers,” would allow OFWs to apply for a loan of up to P50,000 from the Overseas Worker and Welfare Administration.

This loan, said Lapid, would cover both the recruitment costs, such as placement fees, paperwork fees, and plane tickets,  as well as their families’ living expenses for the first three months of their absences.


Lapid explained he filed the bill as a recognition of the contributions of OFWs to the country’s economy, emphasizing the crucial role of OFWs in the development of the nation’s economy,


Citing data from the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, Lapid said cash remittances through banks increased by 5.1 percent, from $29.903 billion in 2020 to $31.418 billion in 2021.

He noted how, despite the COVID-19 pandemic, cash remittances from OFWs reached a record high in 2021.

“For this reason, the least that we can do to repay them is to craft programs that would allow access to services more easily and without the rigorous processes laden with bureaucratic runarounds,” Lapid said.

“It is not enough that we acknowledge the contributions of OFWs to the country. The word without corresponding action is nothing. In recognizing their immense role in our economy, we must respond to their needs to repay their sacrifices,” Lapid added.

Under the bill, the loan must be repaid in 12 equal monthly installments or more but no longer than 24 months at a preferred interest rate no higher than 6 percent annually.

Based on a survey by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA), more than 2 million OFWs worked overseas in 2016.

Jezvette Kyelle Mapagdalita, trainee


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TAGS: Lito Lapid, OFWs

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