THE number of Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) or Filipino workers who worked abroad during the period April to September 2022 was estimated at 1.96 million. This indicates an increase of 7.6 percent from 1.83 million OFWs in the same period of 2021. Of the total OFWs, the number of Overseas Contract Workers (OCWs) or those with existing work contracts was posted at 1.94 million. On the other hand, other OFWs who worked abroad without working visa or work permits such as tourist, visitor, student, medical, and other types of non-immigrant visas but were employed and working full time in other countries was estimated at 26 thousand.
In terms of percent share to the total OFW, OCW had the larger share at 98.7 percent, while other OFWs had 1.3 percent share .
Majority of Overseas Filipino Workers are women
Of the estimated 1.96 million OFWs in 2022, 1.13 million (57.8%) were females, while 828 thousand (42.2%) were males. The same trend was observed in 2021 where 1.10 million (60.2%) OFWs were women, while 726 thousand (39.8%) were men.
Among age groups, the largest number of OFWs was in age group 30 to 34 years old which accounted for 23.4 percent of the total OFWs. The 45 years and over comprised the second largest group (22.7%), followed by the 35 to 39 years age group (18.0%).
Among the female overseas workers, the largest share (24.4%) belonged to age group 30 to 34 years, followed by the 35 to 39 years age group, which comprised 21.0 percent of the 1.13 million female OFWs. On the other hand, among male overseas workers, age group 45 years and over comprised the largest share of 28.4 percent, while those in age group 30 to 34 years had a share of 21.9 percent.
Four in every ten OFWs are in elementary occupations
Across occupation groups, OFWs engaged in elementary occupations1 made up the largest share of 44.4 percent of the total OFWs in 2022. Service and sales workers were the second largest group of OFWs with 15.5 percent, while plant machine operators and assemblers were the third largest group accounting for 12.4 percent.
Among the 1.13 million female OFWs, majority (69.8%) were engaged in elementary occupations, followed by service and sales workers at 14.4 percent and professionals at 6.6 percent. On the other hand, among the 828 thousand male OFWs in 2022, the largest shares of workers were in the following occupations: plant and machine operators and assemblers (28.0%), service and sales workers (17.1%), craft and related trades workers (15.3%), technicians and associate professionals (15.0%), and elementary occupations (9.7%).
Calabarzon has the largest proportion of OFWs
Across the country’s 17 regions, CALABARZON contributed the largest number of OFWs, which was estimated at 15.3 percent of the estimated 1.96 million OFWs in 2022. This was followed by Central Luzon or Region III (13.3%), Western Visayas or Region VI (11.1%), National Capital Region (10.9%), and Ilocos Region or Region I (9.1%).
In 2022, Luzon accounted for majority (62.7%) of the total OFWs, followed by Visayas at 20.7 percent and Mindanao at 16.6 percent.
Saudi Arabia is the leading destination of OFWs
In 2022, the top five destinations of OFWs were the following: Asia (80.8%), Europe (9.0%), North and South America (6.3%), Australia (2.9%), and Africa (1.0%). Of the total 1.96 million OFWs in 2022, about 23.0 percent worked in Saudi Arabia, followed by United Arab Emirates at 13.7 percent. Other countries in Asia with large number of OFWs include Kuwait (7.7%), Hong Kong (6.1%), Qatar (5.8%), and Singapore (5.0%).
Total Remittance reached 197 billion pesos in 2022
Among the 1.96 million OFWs, 41.7 percent sent remittance between 40 thousand pesos to less than 100 thousand pesos, while 20.7 percent remitted at least 100 thousand pesos from April to September 2022.
The total remittance of the OFWs during the period April to September 2022 reached 197.47 billion pesos. This includes cash sent (145.40 billion pesos), cash brought home (43.90 billion pesos), and in kind (8.17 billion pesos).
Of the 145.40 billion pesos cash remittance of the OFWs sent to the country, 103.45 billion were from Asian countries.
The average remittance sent by every OFW from April to September 2022 was placed at 111 thousand pesos, higher than the 91 thousand pesos average remittance in the same period of 2021.
Banks are most preferred mode in sending cash remittances
In terms of the preferred mode of remittance in 2022, about 83.19 billion pesos or 57.2 percent of the total cash remittances were sent by the OFWs through banks. Aside from banks, cash remittances were made through money transfer services amounting to 59.85 billion pesos or 41.2 percent. Collective share of around 1.6 percent of the cash remittances sent by the Filipinos working in other countries were through agency/local office of the OFW, friends/co-worker, door to door, and others.