MANILA, Philippines (The Adobo Chronicles, Manila Bureau) – Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte is known as a master strategist. He manages to always take the upper hand when negotiating with world leaders.
Today, Duterte sent a message to President-elect Joe Biden, proposing to permanently reinstate the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) which allows America to maintain a military presence in the Philippines, under one condition.
The condition? That the incoming Biden administration institute a new immigration policy that would grant Filipino citizens a visa-free entry to the United States.. Duterte calls it the Visiting Filipinos Agreement.
WASHINGTON, D.C. (The Adobo Chronicles, Washington Bureau) – Filipinos looking to visit the United States after the coronavirus pandemic period will no longer need an entry visa, thanks to a proposal reportedly being considered by the incoming Biden administration.
A spokesperson for the President-elect said that the proposal is in recognition of the great service rendered by Filipino nurses and other healthcare workers to Americans amid the Covid-19 crisis. “They are our heroes and it is but proper to reward them for their life-saving work,” he said.
For the longest time, Filipino citizens needed a visa to enter the U.S., despite the fact that U.S. citizens enjoy a visa-free entry into the Philippines as long as they stay for no more than 30 days.
A draft of the proposal obtained by The Adobo Chronicles states that Filipino citizens will no longer be required to have a visa to visit the U.S. as long as they have a Mastercard. American Express will not be honored so Filipino tourists can leave home without it.