I-REMIT, Inc. sees a double-digit growth in remittances from overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) in the last quarter, saying economic activity is resuming even amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

“We expect a double-digit increase in remittances for the last quarter compared to the third quarter of this year, industry wide. Things are beginning to pick up in most countries now,” I-Remit Senior Assistant Vice President of Global Marketing Maria Cristina S. Castillejo said in an e-mail on Friday.

The fund transfer company said most of the remittances will come from Europe and North America.

Money sent home by OFWs declined 2.6% year on year to $19.285 billion in the first eight months of the year, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) data showed. The BSP expects inflows to drop by 2% this year before bouncing back and growing by 4% next year.

The top source of remittances during the eight-month period was the United States, from which 40.2% of the inflows came from. It was followed by Singapore, the United Kingdom, Japan, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Canada, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Qatar.

Amid the pandemic, Ms. Castillejo added the growth in remittances will be mostly driven by industry’s shift to online platforms to ease fund transfers from around the world.

“The positive impact is the shift to digital, which saw a marked increase in our online remittances. It’s a three-digit percentage increase at least for I-Remit,” she said.

The firm said its adoption of US-based Ripple’s blockchain technology, a digital data storage, has boosted its fund transfer transactions since 2018.

I-Remit serves 23 countries. It plans to boost its operations in Hong Kong, US, New Zealand, Austria, Macau, Italy and Manila using part of the P79.04 million in proceeds from its initial public offering, it said last month. — KKTJ