The Philippines Bureau of Immigration, BI, in an August 27, 2020 Press Release, said 78 of its employees have the COVID-19 virus. Consequently, the BI is easing its requirements for those aliens wanting to leave the country due to the surge in COVID-19 cases. Therefore, foreigners w/o ACR Card waiver may now leave the Philippines.
Foreigners w/o ACR Card Waiver May Leave Philippines
Immigration Commissioner Jaime Morente said foreign nationals with visas approved by the BI may now leave the country before they could be issued their alien certificate of registration identity card (ACR I-Card.)
According to Morente, they will no longer require departing aliens with approved and implemented visas to secure an ACR I-Card waiver order.
That’s according to a report from the Immigration website.
He disclosed that the policy would be implemented until December 31 of this year. In addition it may be extended or revoked early depending on the state of the COVID-19 pandemic in the Philippines.
“By allowing these aliens to leave pending release of their I-Cards, the number of people going to our offices will be lessened and physical distancing will be achieved, thus preventing the further spread of the virus among our frontline personnel and clients,” Morente said.
BI Port Operations Acting Chief Grifton Medina disclosed that in compliance with the BI Chief’s directive, immigration officers at the airports will no longer require departing aliens with BI-approved visas but who do not have their I-Cards yet, to present an I-Card waiver order from the Bureau.
Passengers will have to present their passport with visa implementation stamp and official receipts of payment for their ACR I-Card waiver application fee, Emigration Clearance Certificate/Reentry Permit (ECC/RP) or Special Return Certificate (SRC.)
Safeguard your Documents
“The passenger will also be advised to safekeep the copies of his official receipts as the same should be presented to our immigration officer upon his return to the Philippines,” Medina added.
The BI previously let aliens with BI-approved visas to leave without I-Cards last March. Luzon was then under the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) and modified ECQ. The Bureau had to suspend services or scale down operations in most of its offices.
Resumed in June was the issuing of ACR I-Cards and I-Card waiver orders by BI. The online appointment system for clients than began.
However, the BI recently bared that despite the implementation of stricter health protocols, more than 70 of its employees have been infected with the virus.