Weak Peso Could Mean Bigger Balikbayan Boxes

The extended depreciation of the Philippine peso could translate to bigger balikbayan boxes sent by overseas Filipino workers to their families in the Philippines, according to a bank official Tuesday.

In an interview on Balitanggali, according to Alfredo Valencia, a Hong Kong-based Metrobank manager, the current exchange rate would likely motivate OFWs to send bigger balikbayan boxes than remittances during the holiday season.

“Yun ang naghahati sa remittance na pinapadala natin dahil karamihan sa mga OFW natin, mahilig mag-bagahe yung mga ‘yan,” he said. “Ngayon, timely ‘yan, magde-December, nahahati yung padala at sa yung mga bagahe natin.

“As an OFW, maganda para sa akin dahil malaki ang diperensya,” he said. “Kaya lang, ang epekto sa atin siyempre kung tumataas ‘yung palitan, ‘yun naman ang epekto sa ‘tin dahil yung mga nagiimport sa atin, mas mahal ‘yung pagkabili nila ng produkto sa ibang bansa [at] dun din naman sa atin ipapatong.”

However, a weak peso could drive prices of commodities higher, Valencia added.

The peso slightly appreciated last week after it reached P49.17:$1 on Monday, its weakest since December 2008 when it traded for P49.370.

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