A bank official on Saturday said that there will be continuing growth for Mindanao and Davao in 2020 in terms of bank investments by Overseas Filipino Workers (OFW).
Genie Gloria, senior vice president and head of remittance of BDO Unibank, Inc., said they expect an increase in investments, particularly in Davao Region.
She said they cornered 40 percent of the market share as far as the OFW remittances are concerned.
“We have maintained this for the past eight years,” she added.
Gloria said 2019 is a good year for them as they were able to meet targets, deliver accounts to OFWs, and go around in collaboration with their affiliated company like SM Supermalls, where they offer unique promos to the overseas workers and their families.
“Mindanao may not have the biggest number of OFWs but the number is progressing and the accounts are increasing,” she said.
She added that “we will do many things for Mindanao and we will have lots of focus here and go to different places on the island”.
Gloria admitted that there are hard to reach areas in this city but they have put up rural branches of their BDO Network Bank to penetrate these places.
“We will tap the micro-financing program of the BDO Network Bank where OFWs can access financing,” she said.
Meanwhile, Gloria said OFWs are now becoming wiser in handling their finances. “Part of our advocacy is financial education, making them realize the value of saving and investing,” she said.
“Raising their financial knowledge should start at the onset, meaning, we teach them what they can do with their hard-earned money by allocating a portion to savings and looking for investments which can serve their long-term goals,” Gloria said.
Through the BDO Remit, they also visit universities to teach young adults, whose parents may be an OFW, to take care of the money sent to them.
They likewise conduct financial education activities in various barangays to orient people, particularly the unbanked, about the importance of being a part of the formal banking system.
Since starting the financial education advocacy in 2014, Gloria said they have noticed a significant improvement in the saving scheme of OFWs as indicated by the growth in their monthly savings.
“They are saving more now and they know their priorities and goals. For us, this improvement is a testament that this advocacy of ours is working well for them,” she said. (PNA)