Attached Agencies & Other Services
List of Other Services
The increasing inflows of remittances from Overseas Filipinos (OFs) served as one of the profound tenacities of the Commission on Filipinos Overseas (CFO) to convert remittances to more sustainable productive channels through investment and entrepreneurship.
Government agencies may have published online business/investment opportunities and priority areas, yet there seem to be a gap between accessing information and utilizing it for productive use.
Thus in 2013, CFO launched the BaLinkBayan as the Overseas Filipinos’ one-stop online portal for diaspora engagement, offering an integrated and unique platform to re-engage with the Philippines through the so-called D2D (Diaspora to Development) program of the Commission on Filipinos Overseas (CFO). A locally-funded national E-Government Project, the term BaLinkBayan is a play on the Filipino words Balikbayan (returning migrant), balik (return), bayan (country) and the English word “Link,” that refer to the World Wide Web.
Examples of the D2D programs that are parts of the portal are: diaspora philanthropy, medical mission coordination, doing business in the Philippines, tourism initiatives and investment for overseas Filipinos. The portal addresses the concerns of many migrants and their families in investing but would need information and directions to make their money work for them on a sustained basis as there is an absence of a developed government website portal for the purpose of assisting overseas Filipinos to invest in the Philippines.
The Republic Act 10868 otherwise known as the Centenarians Act of 2016 which was signed on 23 June 2016 entitles all Filipinos who reach 100 years old and above, whether living in the Philippines or abroad, a letter of felicitation from the President of the Philippines and a “centenarian gift” worth Php 100,000.
The Commission on Filipinos Overseas (CFO) is the focal agency in charge in coordinating with centenarian applicants based abroad. Completed applications together with the required supporting documents should be submitted by mail through the Philippine Embassy or Consulate with jurisdiction in the country/area.
Interested parties and/or applicants may also contact Ms. Patricia Marie M. Salvador of the Commission on Filipino Overseas (CFO), email address: email@example.com and tel. no. (+632) 552-4760 and fax no. (+632) 561 8327. END
GUIDELINES ON DEPARTURE FORMALITIES FOR INTERNATIONAL-BOUND PASSENGERS IN ALL AIRPORTS AND SEAPORTS IN THE COUNTRY
Pursuant to Republic Act No. 9208, otherwise known as the “Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act of 2003”, and its Implementing Rules and Regulations, Republic Act No. 8042, otherwise known as the “Migrant Workers and Overseas Filipinos Act of 1995”, as amended by Republic Act No. 10022 and other related laws, the following guidelines, providing for definite parameters in the strict enforcement of immigration departure formalities intended for the prevention of trafficking in persons, illegal recruitment, and other related offenses, are hereby promulgated for strict implementation/compliance by all concerned:
I. TOURIST TRAVELERS
A traveler intending to go abroad with a tourist/temporary visitor’s visa shall be subjected to:
1. Primary Inspection
During primary inspection, the following documents shall be required from a traveler:
b. Visa when required
c. Roundtrip Ticket
2. Secondary Inspection
2.1 The Bureau of Immigration shall conduct a secondary inspection of a traveler, when deemed necessary, for the purpose of protecting vulnerable victims of human trafficking and illegal recruitment and other related offenses, through the assessment of the following circumstances:
b. Educational attainment
c. Financial capability to travel
i. If not financially capable to travel, an authenticated affidavit of support, indicating therein the relationship within the 4th civil degree of consanguinity or affinity, together with the supporting documents, may be entertained; and
ii. An affidavit of undertaking/ guaranty may likewise be entertained.
2.2 Any passenger/traveler who will be subjected for secondary inspection shall be required to accomplish the Bureau of Immigration Border Control Questionnaire (BCQ) to be furnished by the Immigration Officer.
2.3 However, the following shall automatically be subjected to secondary inspection:
a. Travelers without financial capacity to travel escorted/accompanied by a foreigner who is not related;
b. Minor traveling alone or unaccompanied by either parent or legal guardian without the required travel clearance from the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD);
c. Repatriated irregular workers, in which case, travel may not be allowed without the clearance from the IACAT (generate data);
d. Partners and spouses of foreign nationals intending to depart to meet and/or marry his/her fiance without the CFO Guidance and Counseling Certificate;
e. Passengers traveling to countries with existing deployment bans, alert levels and travel advisories and those in possession of a visas to the said countries; and
f. Passengers who stayed abroad for more than one (1) year during a previous departure from the country as a tourist/temporary visitor, intending to depart for the second and/or subsequent time.
2.4 Clarificatory questions may be propounded relating to the above-mentioned documents/purpose by the Bureau of Immigration.
2.4 A traveler found to be misrepresenting the purpose of his/her travel as tourist shall not be cleared for departure.
II. OVERSEAS FILIPINO WORKERS
1. First Time Overseas Filipino Workers
1.1 Travelers under this classification shall present the following documents as validated by the Labor Assistance Center (LAC):
c. Airline/Sea craft Tickets
d. Overseas Employment Certificate (OEC)
1.2 Allowable Visa Usage (Based on POEA Rules and Regulations)
Should there by any discrepancy in the actual job position/job title in the visa and in the Overseas Employment Certificate, travel may nevertheless be allowed provided that the POEA through its LAC, has validated and approved the variance based on the following:
a. The visa category is related to the workers’ position or in line with the principal’s nature of business;
b. The recruitment agency executes an Undertaking on Visa Usage; and
c. The worker is aware of the visa discrepancy situation and has executed a Declaration of Awareness and Consent.
1.3 Instance When Visa Usage is NOT Allowed (Based on POEA Rules and Regulations)
The use of Visa Usage Undertaking (VUU), however, does not, and can never, apply to Household Service Workers (HSW). The visa category should be strictly for household-based positions, otherwise, a traveler will not be cleared for departure and the aforementioned documents shall be confiscated for further investigation and appropriate actions.
1.4 For Acts Involving Reprocessing of Contracts and Other Documents
OFWs in possession of “reprocessed” documents shall not be cleared for departure.
Based on R.A. No. 10022, the following constitute acts of reprocessing:
1. The job description/position as indicated in the work visa is different from all other pertinent documents such as the Overseas Employment Certificate, the PDOS Certificate, among others;
2. The actual job as promised or offered is different from the actual overseas work as indicated in the pertinent papers; and
3. The name of the employer or hiring company as indicated in the work visa and/or OEC are not on and the same.
All documents used under the afore-mentioned provision shall be confiscated and turned over to the POEA for further investigation and appropriate action.
2. Balik-Manggagawa/ Returning Workers
2.1 The following OFWs fall under the category of Balik-Manggagawa/ Returning Workers:
a. Worker-on-Leave – a worker who is on vacation or on leave from employment under a valid and existing employment contract and who is returning to the same employer, regardless of any change in jobsite, to finish the remaining unexpired portion of the contract.
b. Rehire – a worker who was rehired by the same employer after finishing his/her contract and who is returning to the same employer; regardless of a change in jobsite.
c. POLO registered worker – a returning worker whose employment contract was not processed with the POEA but was subsequently verified and registered with the Philippine Overseas Labor Office (POLO) in the jobsite and who is returning to the same employer either as a worker-on-leave or rehire, regardless of any change in jobsite. Same employer/principal refers to the current employer of the worker at the time he/she came home for vacation and to whom he/she is returning to resume employment upon return to jobsite.
2.2 Balik-Manggagawa OFWs shall be required to present the following:
b. Valid Visa
c. Airline/sea Craft Ticket
d. OEC issued onsite by the POLO or by the POEA
2.3 In case of incomplete or questionable documentary requirements, the OFW shall be referred to the POEA-LAC for further investigation and appropriate action.
3. Overseas Filipino Workers on vacation but visiting other countries before returning to original worksite/destination
A Balik-Manggagawa OFW with a valid visa and existing work contract who intendes to go to other countries while on vacation need not get a POEA travel exit clearance/OEC. Hence, he/she is considered a tourist and is not exempt from travel tax and terminal fee, but shall be allowed to travel.
4. Special Travel Exit Clearance
Pursuant to a Memorandum of Agreement between POEA and BI, the following are required to secure Special Travel Exit Clearance from the POEA:
a. PEZA registered companies sending their employees to South Korea for training program with worker trainee visas;
b. Seafarers who are under the employment of a Philippine shipping company who are assigned to accompany or “conduct” a vessel that is being imported by the salad shipping company from a foreign port to the Philippines, also referred to as “conduction crew” since they remain to be under the employ of their local companies;
c. Filipino seafarers who are required to undergo special training abroad as prescribed by the prospective foreign employer;
d. Filipino workers and spouses who are covered by the Work to Residence Policy, and who applied for immigration to New Zealand with no pre-arranged employment with an employer prior to their departure; and
e. Filipino workers required to undergo final interview or qualifying examination abroad as prescribed by the prospective foreign employer.
III. IMMIGRANT OR PERMANENT RESIDENT VISA
1. Filipino emigrants/residence visa or permit holders/permanent residence card holders
Travelers falling under this category shall present the following documents for primary inspection:
b. Permanent residence visa/immigrant visa/permanent residence card
c. CFO Emigrant registration sticker
d. Airline/Sea Craft ticket
2. Filipino spouses and other partners of foreign nationals
Travelers falling under this visa category shall present the following documents for primary inspection:
b. Permanent residence permit or visa/immigrant visa/permanent residence card
c. Guidance and Counseling Certificate
d. CFO Emigrant registration sticker
e. Airline/Sea Craft Ticket
3. Filipino J1 visa holders or Exchange Visitor Program Participants Departing for the USA
IV. SPECIAL CASES
1. For Final Interview/Qualifying Exam
Workers to undergo final interview/qualifying exam as required by their prospective employers shall present the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration’s (POEA) Special Exit Clearance. In the absence of thereof, passengers shall not be cleared for departure.
2. On the Job Training
Travelers intending to depart to another country for the purpose of on-the-job training shall present the following additional documents:
i. School certification on the need for on-the-job training
ii. Acceptance by the host company
iii. Certificate of Overseas Training by the Commission on Higher Education (CHED)
3. For relatives requesting for compassionate visit to an irregular worker abroad, a certification from Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA-OUMWA) must be secured.
4. Immediate family members of Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) travelling with a tourist/ temporary visitor’s visa shall be allowed without need of further inspection, provided, they establish relationship within the first civil degree of consanguinity or affinity (spouse, children and parents) with the OFW and provided further that they present photo copies of the following documents of the Overseas Filipino Worker:
c. Overseas Employment Certification
d. NSO authenticated birth/marriage certificate, as the case may be
5. Passengers who intend to depart for intra-company trainings abroad for less than three (3) months shall present an invitation from the host company reflecting the duration, entitlements, travel and other incidental expenses; while those exceeding three (3) months shall present the corresponding Trainorship Agreement containing all the above data.
V. GENERAL GUIDELINES
1. Travelers presenting fake/fraudulent passports, documents, immigration stamp shall be confiscated by the BI without prejudice to any other action that may be taken against said passenger.
2. The Bureau of Immigration shall turn-over the confiscated passports and other fake/fraudulent documents to the DOG-IACAT for appropriate action.
3. Passengers who were not cleared for departure by reason of vulnerability to trafficking, illegal recruitment, or other related rimes, shall be immediately turned over by the Bureau of Immigration with the IACAT Task Force or to designated agency/ies for provision of mandatory services such as temporary shelter, legal assistance, or psycho-social interventions, and for more in-depths information gathering.
4. Immigration Officers, in the performance of their functions and duties, shall adhere to the principles of Courtesy, Accountability, Responsibility, Efficiency and Service (BI – C.A.R.E.S.). The Bureau shall, likewise, institute a mechanism for immediate feedback and redress of grievances of passengers.
5. All agencies and Task Forces designated for the purpose of combating trafficking in persons, illegal recruitment, and other related crimes are hereby directed to revise existing procedures and systems to complement these guidelines within one (1) month from the effectivity thereof, to be submitted to the IACAT and PTFAIR for review and evaluation.
This service is currently being reviewed and will be further updated.
In general, only Filipino citizens and corporations or partnerships with least 60% of the shares are owned by Filipinos are entitled to own or acquire land in the Philippines subject to the following exceptions:
- acquired before the 1935 Philippine Constitution
- acquired by reason of succession or inheritance (parent/s was/were Filipino citizens at the time of their death)
- purchase of not more than 40% interest in a condominium project
- Former natural-born Filipinos can own land in the Philippines, subject to limitations prescribed by Philippine Republic Act 8179 (for residence purposes- up to 1000 square meters of urban land or one hectare of rural land) and Batas Pambansa 185 (for business or investment purposes 5000 square meters of urban land or three hectares of rural land).
- Filipinos who are married to aliens who retain their Filipino citizenship, unless by their act or omission they have renounced their Filipino citizenship
According to the Philippine Food and Drug Administration (FDA, formerly BFAD), any foreign organization intending to bring medicines and/or medical equipment to be donated or used during the conduct of medical missions must comply with the requirements of the Department of Health’s Bureau of International Health Cooperation (DOH-BIHC). DOH-BIHC shall then facilitate the issuance of a clearance from the FDA and the Bureau of Health Devices and Technology (BHDT) for the drugs, medical supplies and medical equipment, as the case may be.
1. All applications for Foreign Surgical and Medical Missions (FSMM) shall be submitted to the Philippine Medical Association (PMA) who shall forward the same to the following professional groups copy furnished DOH. Click here to download application form (from PMA website, www.philippinemedicalassociation.org).
2. Each member of the foreign medical team must submit the following documents in applying for temporary license to practice during the duration of the mission. All documents must be in English or with English translation:
a. Valid/current license from country of origin, authenticated by the Embassy/Consulate (please refer to Authentication procedures and requirements in the list of Consular Services)
b. Board certification (specialty), authenticated by the Embassy/Consulate (please refer to Authentication procedures and requirements in the list of Consular Services)
c. Curriculum vitae, acknowledged by the Philippine Embassy/Consulate (please refer to Authentication procedures and requirements in the list of Consular Services)
d. Passport sized picture in four copies (taken within one year)
e. Application letter addressed to the President of PMA to contain the following information:
– Type of mission (medical, surgical or both)
– Duration of the mission and inclusive dates
– Names and specialties of the mission team members
– Written consent from the host local government executive (governor/mayor) and/or of the health facility where the mission will be conducted
f. The following are additional requirements if the foreign mission team members intend to bring drugs, and/or medicines, medical supplies and medical equipment to be donated or used during the mission:
– Itemized list of the items together with the quantity and the expiration dates for drugs and medicines
– Flight details
– Deed of donation authenticated at the country of origin (please refer to Authentication procedures and requirements in the list of Consular Services)
– Deed of acceptance from the host hospital/Local Government Unit (LGU)
– Drugs and medicines to be donated should have a shelf life of at least 12 months upon arrival in the country and the said medicine shall be used solely for the scheduled mission.
– Application must be submitted 60 days before the date of mission to facilitate clearance/s from DOH and other agencies.
g. Letter of certification from the sponsoring host organization (LGU or Non-Government Organization (NGO)) certifying the need and type of mission to be conducted. Cost of post-care mission of morbidities/mortalities arising from the mission will be shouldered as well by the host organization.
h. Proof of juridical entity (certified true copy of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) registration must be submitted.
i. Notarized letter of guarantee from both the medical mission group and the host organization assuming full responsibility for the outcome of the missions.
3. The PMA, upon receipt of all requirements, will forward the application to the concerned specialty societies for evaluation of credentials. The DOH will be informed immediately of the presence of drugs, medical supplies and medical equipment.
4. The DOH shall facilitate issuance of clearance by its FDA and BHDT for the above mentioned goods.
5. After the evaluation of the missioner’s credentials by the concerned Specialty Society, the PMA shall send a letter of endorsement to DOH.
6. The DOH shall then endorse the documents to Professional Regulation Commission (PRC).
7. The PRC, after final review, shall issue the Special Temporary Permit to Practice to concerned foreign missioners.
8. The lead time for the processing of the application are as follows:
- PMA – 2 weeks before the mission date
- DOH – 1 week before the mission date
- PRC – 3 weeks before the mission date
9. Post-mission report shall be submitted by the head of the foreign surgical and/or medical missions, concurred/noted by the President of the local component society of PMA, and/or specialty society and the LGU concerned, to the oversight agencies (DOH, PMA, PRC) 15 days after the completion of the mission. All records and audio-visual documents must also be submitted in triplicate form. The post-mission report should contain the following minimum basic information:
- No. and age of cases seen
- Diagnosis of patients
- List of medicines distributed and surgical interventions done
- Endorsements to the necessary health facilities (follow-up, further evaluation and management)
- Morbidities and mortalities, if any
10. All materials submitted to the oversight agencies shall be the property of the Philippine counterpart and may not be used for advertisement, solicitation or medical publication without the written and expressed approval of the local medical society and/or specialty society of the PMA and the local counterpart. Any intellectual output as journal or publication must include the local physicians as senior authors.
11. Former Filipino Registered Health Professionals who are part of a Medical/Surgical Mission Team may practice their profession in the Philippines upon presentation of proof of valid and current PRC licenses. Otherwise, they have to renew their licenses upon submission of the following requirements (Presidential Decree No. 541):
- Photocopy of current/valid passport (page 1 and the page showing the date of arrival in the Philippines)
- Photocopy of PRC license and valid certificate of registration
- License/Certificate of Registration in the adopted country or Certification of employment with letterhead indicating the job description within the definition of the applicant’s profession
- Four pieces of recent passport size pictures (taken within one year)
- Payment of prescribed fees at PRC
- Certificated of training and board certification (for specialists)
- Application for Temporary Special Permit (PRC form 103-A)
12. Foreign Religious groups/missionaries practicing medicine in the country shall abide by the same requirements and adhere to the guidelines. These missioners who serve for longer period of time shall signify their intention to continue living in the Philippines to pursue missionary works. They shall secure Special Temporary Permit, which is to be renewed annually. The following must be submitted:
- Certification for their congregation that the medical works are purely for charity purposes and with no remuneration involved whatsoever.
- A certification from the congregation assuming the responsibility for any action of the said physician
- The missionary should submit to PMA an annual mission report including a list of patients treated
- The missionary is required to attend PMA or component societies’ Continuing Medical Education (CME) related activities once a year to update their medical knowledge.
- The missionary who conducted his missionary works in the province must coordinate with the PMA component society for proper identification and monitoring.
According to the DOH-BIHC, the Commission on Filipinos Overseas (CFO) may be contacted to assist organizers of foreign medical missions. The CFO’s contact details are:
Commission on Filipinos Overseas
Citigold Center, 1345 President Quirino Avenue,
Corner South Superhighway, Manila
Telephone Nos. (632) 561-8327, 552-4701
Fax No. 561-8332
Mobile Nos. (+63) 9175630773 / (+63) 9175630782
The DOH’s Revised Policies and Guidelines in the Conduct of FSMM may be found at www.doh.gov.ph (click on Doing Business > Medical Missions).
Below is the DOH’s complete text on the Procedural Guide for Shipping Medicines/Drugs for Medical Missions.
Pursuant to item VII, No. 3 (f) of the Joint Administrative Order No. 2009-0030, of the DOH, the PRC, and the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG), the following are additional requirements if the foreign mission team members intend to bring drugs, and/or medicines, medical supplies and medical equipment to be donated or used during the mission:
- Itemized list of the items together with the quantity and the expiration dates for drugs and medicines
- Flight details
- Deed of donation authenticated at the country of origin
- Deed of acceptance from the host hospital/Local Government Unit
- Drugs and medicines to be donated should heave a shelf life of at least 12 months upon arrival in the country and the said medicine shall be used solely for the scheduled mission
- Application must be submitted 60 days before the date of mission to facilitate clearance/s from DOH and other agencies
With regard to the entry of drugs which need to be regulated by the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA), please refer to the PDEA’s website at www.pdea.gov.ph.
Please be also informed that the donated medicines are subject to duties and taxes. These shall only be exempted from duties if these are consigned to government and private (primary and secondary) hospitals duly licensed to operated by the DOH, and welfare/relief dispensing organizations/agencies registered and/or accredited by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) and registered with the SEC. Even if the donation is exempted from duties, it will still be subject to Value-Added Tax (VAT), which is computed at twelve percent (12%) of the total cost of shipment.
In securing duty-free clearance, the following documents must be submitted to the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) and the Department of Finance (DOF):
A. From the Donor:
- Deed of Donation duly authenticated by the Philippine Embassy or Consulate;
- Packing list of donated items. If medicines would be included in the shipment, kindly submit the itemized list of drugs and quantity to be donated indicating brand/generic name, dosage forms/strengths, batch/lot number, expiration date of at least one (1) year upon receipt, and name/address of the manufacturer; and
- Shipping Documents (i.e. bill of lading). The original copy will be needed by the consignee/local counterpart in processing the release of donation.
B. From the Donee/Consignee:
- Letter to the DOH-BIHC requesting endorsement to the FDA for the issuance of clearance.
- The letter request should be submitted with the complete list of drugs and quantity to be donated, with the following information: brand/generic name, formulation (with English translation), dosage forms/strengths, batch/lot number, expiration date of at least one (1) year upon receipt, and name/address of the manufacturer.
- Letter to the NEDA and DOF requesting for the issuance of duty-free clearance for the donation;
- Duly notarized Deed of Acceptance;
- Distribution plan for medicines;
- Current and valid DOH License to Operate, if hospital
- DSWD License to Operate and Certification of Accreditation, if non-government organization; and
- FDA Certificate of Product Registration (for medicines)
The donee/consignee in the Philippines may apply for the clearances for the donated items. It is important that the name listed as donee/consignee in the deed of donation must be the same as that appearing in the shipping documents.
We suggest that the shipping of any donation to the Philippines should be withheld unless prior coordination with the donee/consignee has been made, and appropriate endorsements/clearances from government agencies have been secured.
Initial Registration – For PRC Exam Passers based abroad
For those living outside the Philippines, your Special Power of Attorney or Letter of Authority needs to undergo consular notarization.
To have your Special Power of Attorney or Letter of Authority notarized by the Embassy click here.
In accordance with Land Transportation Office (LTO) Administrative Order No. RIB-2008-011 Series of 2007, it is now possible for Filipinos abroad who hold an authentic Philippine driver’s license to renew their expired license through their authorized representative in the Philippines.
The following documents must be presented by the authorized representative of the applicant to LTO:
- Original driver’s license and receipt (plus one photocopy of each);
- Photocopy of Philippine passport (first page, visa page and pages showing departure from the Philippines and last arrival overseas);
- Special Power of Attorney (SPA) from the licensee to the LTO requesting the renewal and authorizing a representative to renew the license on his / her behalf.The SPA must be authenticated by the Philippine Embassy or Consulate General (please refer to Authentication procedures and requirements in the list of Consular Services).
Applicants within the National Capital Region (NCR) or Metro Manila may apply for renewal at the License Section of the Central Office of the LTO in Quezon City.
Representatives who are outside of NCR may apply at the LTO field office of their choice.
NOTE: only an OFFICIAL RECEIPT will be issued by the LTO to those who apply for extensions on their driver’s license through a representative. A new ID-card can only be issued upon the arrival of the applicant at the LTO in the Philippines and compliance with all requirements for license renewal, including the biometrics capture, medical, vision and drug test.
The following individuals are required by the Philippine Government to pay the Travel Tax every time they depart the country for an overseas destination:
(a) Filipino citizens
(b) Permanent resident aliens
(c) Permanent resident aliens
The following Filipino citizens are exempted from the payment of Travel Tax pursuant to Sec. 2 of PD 1183, as amended:
(a) Filipino overseas contract workers.
(b) Filipino permanent residents abroad whose stay or visit in the Philippines is less than one year.
(c) Infants (2 years and below).
Also exempted are foreign diplomatic representatives in the Philippines, United Nations employees, US military personnel, international carrier crew, Philippine foreign service personnel (i.e., officials and employees of the Philippine Government who are assigned in Philippine foreign service posts and who are returning to their country of assignment), Philippine government employees (who are on official travel), bona fide students on scholarships and personnel of multinational companies.
Non-immigrant aliens, who have not stayed in the Philippines for more than a year, is exempted from the Travel Tax.
For more information on travel tax exemption, read this or contact the Philippines’ Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority (TIEZA) here
Duty and Tax Free Privileges
Section 105 of the Tariff and Customs Code of the Philippines (TCCP) as amended by Executive Order No. 206 provides duty and tax free privileges to the following individuals, the extent of which depends on their particular status:
(1) Returning Resident. A Returning Resident is a Filipino national who had gone abroad and is now returning. Only those Returning Residents who have uninterrupted stay abroad of at least six (6) months prior to their return to the Philippines are entitled to duty and tax-free privileges.
(2) Overseas Contract Workers (OCW). An OCW is a Filipino national who is working in a foreign country under an employment contract. Only OCWs who have uninterrupted stay abroad for at least six (6) months are entitled to duty and tax-free privileges.
(3) Former Filipino. A former Filipino national is one who has acquired foreign citizens abroad and is now returning. Only former Filipinos who are coming to settle permanently in the Philippines and have stayed abroad for six (6) months are entitled to the duty and tax exemption privileges.
What is the extent of duty and tax-free privileges of returning Filipinos or Balikbayans?
The extent varies as follows:
(1) Returning Resident – Personal effects and household goods used by him and abroad for at least six (6) months and the dutiable value of which is not more than Ten Thousand Pesos (PhP10,000.00) are exempt from duties and taxes. Any amount in excess of PhP10,000.00 is subject to fifty percent (50%) duty for the first PhP10,000.00 exemption across the board as provided for under Section 105 (F) of the Tariff and Customs Code of the Philippines.
(2) Overseas Contract Worker (OCW) – in addition to the privileges granted to Returning Residents as described above, an OCW may be allowed to bring in, duty and tax free Ten Thousand Pesos (PhP10,000.00) worth of used home appliances provided:
- The quantity is limited to one of each kind.
- The privilege has not been enjoyed previously during the calendar year which must be declared under oath by the owner.
- The owner’s passport is presented at the port/airport of entry.
- Any amount in excess of PhP10,000.00 will be subject to taxes and duties.
Are family members of returning residents, OCW and former Filipinos also entitled to certain privileges?
Yes, provided they themselves satisfy the specifications outlined in Section 105 of TCCP.
What are the conditions and limitations attached to tax exemption privileges?
The following are the conditions imposed in availing of the duty and tax privileges:
(1) The Bureau of Customs must be presented with a written endorsement from the relevant government agency
(2) The goods extended duty and tax-free privileges are not to be sold, bartered nor traded
(3) The quantity is not commercial.
(4) The goods are not prohibited importations. Goods that are restricted or prohibited require endorsement from the proper regulatory agency.
For more information on duty and tax free privileges, contact the Philippines’ Bureau of Customs
All arriving travellers must accomplish a Customs Baggage Declaration Form (CBDF) which will be submitted to the assigned Customs Officer at the customs arrival area for clearance.
Arriving passengers are required to declare all goods carried/brought, indicating the quantity and value. If unsure of what to declare, please consult any Customs Officer on duty.
For more information, please contact:
Bureau of Customs-Customer Assistance and Response Services (BOC-CARES)
Telephone: +63 2 705 6000
Official Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/BureauOfCustomsPH
All Foreign Media outlets visiting the Philippines must download and accomplish all of the necessary documentary requirements listed below:
- List of Requirements for Visiting Media
- International Press Center (IPC) Accreditation Form
- Health Declaration Form
- Consolidated Crew List
Completed requirements are to be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org
For visa requirements and instructions check out our visa page and email email@example.com for inquiries and information.
Philippine Overseas Labor Office
The Overseas Employment Certificate (OEC), also known as exit clearance/pass, is a document certifying the regularity of recruitment and documentation of an overseas Filipino worker (OFW). It is presented to the immigration officer at the airport of exit in the Philippines. The OEC is issued through the POPSBaM System. An OFW applying for OEC should register in the system. Registration in the system requires an active e-mail address.
To learn more about the OEC and registration details, visit the POLO website here.
Membership in Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) is mandatory for all overseas Filipino workers (OFWs). All OWWA members are covered by life insurance and other social benefits implemented by OWWA. For more details and requirements, visit the POLO website here.
For inquiries, please contact 1-202-467-9426 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) requires that employment documents relative to the recruitment of overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) and accreditation and registration of foreign principals/employers are verified by the Philippine Overseas Labor Office (POLO). The verification process is intended to validate the actual existence of the job and employer/staffing agency; and to ensure that the terms and conditions of employment of the OFW comply with the minimum standards of the POEA and that of the government of the country of destination.
For more information, visit the POLO website here.
- Processed fully-heat treated meat products, including canned meat, regardless of weight from countries free from Transboundary Animal Diseases [such as African Swine Fever, Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza, Foot and Mouth Disease) – NO SPS IMPORT CLEARANCE REQUIRED FROM BUREAU OF ANIMAL INDUSTRY. MEAT AND MEAT PRODUCTS FROM BANNED COUNTRIES SHALL BE SUBJECT TO IMMEDIATE CONFISCATION.
- Processed but uncooked meat products (e.g., salted, cured, in brine, smoked, marinated, etc.) from countries free from Transboundary Animal Diseases (such as African Swine Fever, Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza, Foot and Mouth Disease) – MAXIMUM WEIGHT 0F TEN (10) KILOGRAMS PER PASSENGER: NO SPS IMPORT CLEARANCE REQUIRED FROM BUREAU OF ANIMAL INDUSTRY. PASSENGER MAY PRESENT EITHER A VETERINARY HEALTH CERTIFICATE, PROOF OF PURCHASE, OR ANY VALID DOCUMENT INDICATING THE SOURCE OF ORIGIN. MEAT AND MEAT PRODUCTS FROM BANNED COUNTRIES SHALL BE SUBJECT TO IMMEDIATE CONFISCATION.
- Unprocessed meat products (e.g. frozen meat) – SPS IMPORT CLEARANCE FROM BUREAU OF ANIMAL INDUSTRY IS REQUIRED, REGARDLESS OF WEIGHT. NO CLEARANCE WILL BE SUBJECT TO CONFISCATION.
Any person intending to impot parrots and any other birds is advised to contact the Bureau of Animal Industry (BAI) first through the following coordinates: National Veterinary Quarantine Services Division at email email@example.com or phone number +63 (02) 8528 2240 local 1302, 1307, 1308, 1310, and 1310. This requirement is due to the existence of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza both in the US and in the Philippines.
For other inquiries, contact our agricultural counsellor at firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com
Please see attached requirements, guidelines, and forms that need to be filled out for one time importation of pets:
- Requirements on One Time Importation or Pet Owners & Commercial Importers;
- Notarized Affidavit of Undertaking Pet Owners (One-Time Importers);
- BAI Pet Import Intercommerce Guide 062021
For other inquiries, contact our agricultural counsellor at firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com
Any person intending to import fresh fruits and vegetables under this category shall file an application for Plant Quarantine Clearance (PQC) using BPI Q Form No. 1, to be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com for initial evaluation. Once the evaluation is done, BPI will advise the applicant to comply with the other requirements and provide the bank details for the regulatory fee to be settled.
- Plant Quarantine Clearance Requirement Checklist
- List of fresh fruits and vegetables allowed to enter the Philippines for personal or non-commercial use
For other inquiries, contact our agricultural counsellor at firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com