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Dec 1, 2008
Special Visa for Foreign Investors in the Philippines
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With the aim to create employment opportunities for its citizens, the Philippines will provide a special visa to foreign businessmen whose undertakings and projects will produce jobs for its people.


Marcelino C. Libanan, an Immigration Commissioner said that the special visa will allow foreign investors a semi-indefinite stay in the Philippines.
The jobs generation visa was formalized through an executive order. It was originally proposed by the Department of Justice (DOJ) to the Office of the President since the DOJ has direct supervision over the Bureau of Immigration.


The President of the Philippines assigned the Immigration Bureau to come up with a draft of the rules regarding the new visa that aims to attract foreigners to start ventures in the country that would create jobs for Filipinos.


Foreign businessmen can obtain a special RP visa if their project/ investment can create at least 10 jobs for Filipinos.


According to Libanan, any foreign businessman can avail of the visa as long as all provisions of trade and labor laws are followed.

Details on the nature and quality of employment and what industry will be prioritized are not explained. The Immigration chief said any foreign businessman could apply for the visa provided there is no violation of trade and labor laws.

There is already an existing law that entitles foreign businessmen to have a special visa. However, Libanan said, "Since the amount are kept in banks, it does not directly create jobs."

The senior adviser of the American Chamber of Commerce, John Forbes, said, "Foreign investors would always want to create more jobs but there is already a law [Foreign Investments Act] that requires the businesses to provide a minimum capital and hire 50 people. [The proposed jobs generation visa] may not conform with it."

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