Philippines to relax visa norms for Indian students, retirees, professionals

March 14, 2015
Philippines slated to simplify visa regulations for Indian retirees, students, professionals

The government of Philippines is thinking seriously about arranging special visas for Indian citizens, particularly students and those who have undergone retirement to settle and invest in the nation. According to a delegate of Philippines, continuous joint discussions going on between Indian and Phillipine officials in relation to visa facilitation schemes and other related matter. 

According to the executive director of the Commission on Higher Education, Julito Vitriolo, the step was meant to allure more Indians to come here for studies. He went on to say that they were planning to ease some of the rigorous rules without compromising on quality. He openly discussed about steps to strengthen cultural ties and contacts between people of India and ASEAN states.

This dialogue held in Delhi is an annual meeting of collaborators where improvised ways of enhancing cooperation were explored. This would be extended to trade as well as connectivity between India and the ASEAN bloc. ASEAN countries comprise of Indonesia, Singapore, Laos, Myanmar, Cambodia, Philippines, Brunei, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam. 

Vitriolo spoke about the combined consular talks between both countries’ governments regarding proposals for visa assistance schemes for students, professionals, retirees, businessmen and investors from India. Philippines has almost 2,000 Indian students who have taken admission either in health-related or medicine programs in schools in the Philippines. This was a stark contrast from the 300 figure five years ago. 

This rise in the count of students is because of inexpensive education costs and the mentioned education domain was lined up along the lines of the U.S. The Ched official, Vitriolo explained that under the present set-up, it was cumbersome for the Indian students to renew their visas every semester as per the requirements of the Bureau of Immigration. To ease this process, simplified measures for visa issuance will be employed. There are talks for adopting the visas on arrival type also.

Vitriolo further said that the government’s aim would be to lessen the number of days required for applying for a student visa. Unlike the 12 years of basic education in India, Philippines have a 10-year set up. So, it was building on mutual recognition of qualifications and degrees. It gives importance to the additional two-year Indian education. 

Apart from students, retired Indian nationals are the next target group of Philippines such that they invest their money in businesses here. This will act as a multiple effect if Indian nationals migrate and retire in Philippines because they would be spending on their children’s education and investing as well.

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