Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Exclusive passport center for OFWs to be opened soon

The Department of Foreign Affairs will soon open an exclusive passport application establishment for overseas Filipino workers in Ortigas.

DFA spokesman Charles Jose on Tuesday (May 31) said the new center will be situated in its existing consular office in Robinsons Galleria in Ortigas, which is just across the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration, where Filipino workers process their application for work abroad.

“This shows that we are giving importance to our OFWs and the contribution that they give to the country’s economy,” Jose said.

The center will be dedicated to only OFWs, who can just walk in to apply.

“They don’t need to apply online to get an appointment,” Jose said.

While waiting for the center to become fully operational Jose said existing courtesy lanes for OFWs in DFA consular offices nationwide will remain open to process their applications.

The Philippines has more than 8 million Filipino workers employed in the skilled and unskilled sectors across the world.

Their remittance keep the Philippine economy afloat as they send home over billion annually.

Jose said that starting this June, all no-show passport applicants on the date of their appointment will be banned from securing a new slot for 30 days.

The practice of disregarding their scheduled appointments, Jose said, has caused a two-month waiting period for hundreds of applicants.

He said 47 percent of people who applied for appointment do not show up on the date of their appointment.

The DFA receives at least 15,000 passport applications daily.

“This policy will be enforced this month and we expect a smooth flow of application by September as soon as the backlogs have been addressed,” Jose said. (PNA)

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