MANILA- The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) of Taiwan has announced that the implementation of its visa-free entry for Filipinos has been postponed in order to complete relevant administrative procedures and inter-agency coordination.
MOFA is expected to release the full details of the implementation of the said visa-free arrangements including the exact date of the commencement of implementing the visa-free treatment and its requirements either in September 2017 or at an appropriate date.
Since 2016, the Taiwanese government has adopted a number of visa liberalization measures for Philippine nationals to visit Taiwan as part of its New Southbound Policy. These measures are expected to enhance bilateral relations, and expand the multi-faceted exchanges and cooperation between Taiwan and the Philippines.
Despite the postponement of the said visa-free policy since October 2016, the Philippines has been included in Taiwan's e-visa program list.
For Filipinos who wish to visit Taiwan for tourism or a short visit, they are advised to continue to apply for either free Travel Authorization Certification (TAC), or payable e-visa (single entry:NTD1,632) or the payable appropriate proper visa stamped in the passport (single entry:P2,400, multiple entry:Php 4,800). Therefore, for the time being, prior to the full implementation of the visa-free arrangements, Filipinos should still follow the existing visa regulations and procedures to obtain visa(s) before travel to Taiwan.
In addition, MOFA has decided to further enlarge the eligibility criteria of the ROC (Taiwan) Travel Authorization Certificate (TAC) for qualified Philippine travellers starting from 1st June this year. Filipinos who have been issued with an ROC (Taiwan) visa (labor visas with remarks FL or X are excluded) over the recent 10 years may also apply for the said TAC, no need to pay any fee. The said TAC allows multiple-entries to Taiwan, valid for 90 days with every stay up to 30 days.
Dr. Gary Song-Huann Lin, Representative of Taiwan to the Philippines, wishes to emphasize that the granting of visa-free privilege to Filipinos is one of his priority work plans during his tenure in the Philippines to make his dream of closer Taiwan-Philippines bilateral ties come true as soon as possible. It aims to enhance the mutually beneficial bilateral tourism, trade, investment, agricultural, technology, economic, cultural, educational and people-to-people cooperation and exchanges between Taiwan and the Philippines.
Representative Lin further pointed out that the postponement is simply for smooth operations, more effective immigration procedure, and the safeguard of security for all passengers.
The Philippines is considered as an important partner of Taiwan, so we are really making efforts to welcome more Filipino visitors to visit Taiwan, and the postponement of the visa-free arrangements is only intended to conduct seamless operations, facilitate the entry to Taiwan, and enhance security and safety for everyone, Representative Lin said.
Further visa information is available at the website of TECO in the Philippines at http://www.roc-taiwan.org/ph
Source: Philippines News Agency