ALL overseas Filipinos, immigrants and contract workers will be serviced by the newest state-run Overseas Filipino Bank (OFB), the Deparment of Finance (DOF) said yesterday.
This following the Land Bank of the Philippines’ buyout of Philippine Postal Savings Bank (PPSB) in September that led to the creation of the OFB. The bank, according to Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez in a statement, will become a subsidiary of LandBank.
Some of the key features of the OFB will be a remittance service for OFWs and loan programs for Filipinos planning to return to the country, either to start a business or build a home.
Part of the plan is to extend products that will mobilize the savings of OFWs and help them invest in the country’s capital markets.
“Loans for house repair, for educating the beneficiaries here, and direct remittances to schools, so those are the programs we have discussed with (Labor) Secretary Silvestre Bello III, and he seems to be very happy about the service we would be providing,” Dominguez added.
Under Executive Order No. 44 issued last Sept. 28, President Rodrigo Duterte ordered the Philippine Postal Corp. and the Bureau of the Treasury (BTr) to transfer the PPSB shares to the LandBank at zero value.
The order states that OFB is a “policy bank dedicated to provide financial products and services tailored to the requirement of overseas Filipinos” and will focus on delivering “quality and efficient foreign remittance services.” Based on the 2016 Survey on Overseas Filipinos of the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA), 2.2 million Filipinos worked abroad from April to September. Of this number, those with existing work contracts comprised 97.5 percent, and the rest worked overseas without contracts. (JOG)