The Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) will allow foreign investors to enter the Philippines starting from Nov. 1.

Under Resolution No. 80 dated Oct. 22, foreign nationals with investment visas will be allowed to enter the Philippines, which has implemented travel curbs starting February to stem the rise in coronavirus infections.

Foreign nationals should have visas issued by the Bureau of Immigration pursuant to Executive Order No. 226 or the Omnibus Investments Code; Department of Justice; or Aurora Pacific Economic Zone and Freeport Authority, and Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority.

The entry of foreign investors will still be subject to conditions, such as the validity of the visa and pre-booking of accredited quarantine facilities.

The Bureau of Immigration will coordinate with airlines for the proper implementation of the resolution.

The Philippines has seen a slump in foreign investments as it implemented one of the world’s longest and strictest lockdowns earlier this year. Lockdown restrictions have since been eased as part of the government’s efforts to revive the economy, which entered a recession in the second quarter.

At the same time, the IATF-EID lifted the pre-boarding coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) testing requirement for outbound Filipino travellers.

“Whenever required by the country of destination or the airline, a negative COVID-19 test taken in accordance with the health and safety protocols of such destination country or airline,” the IATF-EID said.

Those travelling on tourist or short-term visas should submit confirmed round trip tickets and adequate travel and health insurance “to cover travel disruptions and hospitalization” in case they are infected with the coronavirus.

They also have to execute a Bureau of Immigration declaration acknowledging the risks in their travel.

Outbound travellers shall follow guidelines for returning Filipinos upon their return, requiring them to undergo a 14-day quarantine upon arrival, the IATF said.

The task force allowed non-essential outbound travels starting October 21.

The task force also eased the mass gatherings for religious activities in areas under general community quarantine, now allowing 30% of the seating or venue capacity. — Vann Marlo M. Villegas

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