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Renew Passports Six Months Before Expiry, DFA Reminds Public

15 April 2010 - The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) reminds the public to check the validity of their passports and renew them six months before expiry to avoid the hassle of getting a replacement in light of increased passport applications especially during the summer season.

A passport is valid for five years, but airlines and countries require passports with validity of six months prior to the expiry date. 

"We urge everyone to check the validity of their passports, and renew them six months before expiry.  This way, they avoid the hassle of rushing at the last minute to secure a passport, especially when they already need to travel overseas," DFA Assistant Secretary for Consular Affairs Jaime Victor Ledda said.

Currently, the DFA charges P950 for regular processing (20 working days) and P1,200 for expedited processing (10 working days).  For those applying in the DFA's regional consular offices (RCOs), another four days is added for transport of the passport booklet from Manila to the RCO.

The DFA also reminds passport applicants to avail of the appointment system to ensure quick and comfortable service.  Walk-in applicants are discouraged.

The DFA further reiterates that securing an appointment online is free of charge. It is warning the public against unscrupulous individuals charging applicants P200 fee for securing for them online appointments.

Applicants can check the passport requirements and secure an appointment at www.passport.com.ph or by calling hotline  (02) 737-1000. They may also call the DFA helplines at telephone numbers  (02) 831-8971,  (02) 551-4437, (02) 551-4402, (02) 834-4855 and (02) 834-4424

DFA Passport Services to Commence at New Building 

07 March 2010 - The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) wishes to inform the public that beginning tomorrow, March 8, passport services will commence at a new building located at the corner of Bradco and Macapagal Avenues in Aseana Business Park, near the Mall of Asia. 

The new telephone numbers at this building are the following: (02)737-1000, (02) 831-8971, (02) 551-4437, (02) 551-4402, (02)834-4855 and  (02) 834-4424.To ensure quick, comfortable service, passport applicants are advised to check the passport requirements and secure an online appointment at www.passport.com.ph or call (02)737-1000. Applications may also be filed with the DFA's 19 Regional Consular and satellite offices. 

Applicants are no longer required to bring photographs since they will have their pictures taken using ePassport data capturing machines at the new building. 

They still need to bring other necessary requirements such as the application form that is available for download at the DFA website and at the reception desks of the new consular building. 

Only those with confirmed appointments will be accommodated at the new facility. No escorts are allowed to accompany individual applicants at this time. 

The new 7,000-square meter, four-storey building is a few blocks away from the DFA main building.  

The new building is part of the ongoing modernization program undertaken by Foreign Affairs Secretary Alberto G. Romulo to further improve the DFA's frontline services which include harnessing new technologies in passport and visa issuances and streamlined procedures in the authentication of documents.  

"It is part of our dream for the Filipino people to have a world-class passport and consular services.  We have done it through the Machine Readable Passport (MRP) and the ePassport, and now the dream is complete with the new DFA-Office of Consular Affairs building," he said.   (back)

DFA Authentication and Passport Services Moving to New Building 

27 February 2010 - The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) wishes to inform the public that its Office of Consular Affairs (OCA) has started the gradual transfer of its operations to a new building located at the corner of Bradco and Macapagal Avenues in Aseana Business Park, near the Mall of Asia.

The new 7,000-square meter, four-storey building is a few blocks away from the DFA main building. 

Authentication services will be transferred to the new building on March 4 (Thursday), while all passport operations will be at said location on March 8 (Monday).  On said dates, all new consular and passport applications shall be filed at the new location.

The new building is part of the ongoing modernization program undertaken by Foreign Affairs Secretary Alberto G. Romulo to further improve the DFA's frontline services which include harnessing new technologies in passport and visa issuances and streamlined procedures in the authentication of documents.

"It is part of our dream for the Filipino people to have a world-class passport and consular services.  We have done it through the Machine Readable Passport (MRP) and the ePassport, and now the dream is complete with the new DFA-OCA building," he said.

To ensure quick, comfortable service, passport applicants are advised to check the passport requirements and secure an online appointment at www.dfa.gov.ph (consular tab), or to call the consular help-line number (02-556-0000) or DFA telephone number (02-834-4000).  Applications may also be filed with the DFA's 19 Regional Consular and satellite offices.  (back)

KSA BOUND WORKERS TO BE PHOTOGRAPHED AND FINGERPRINTED

Saudi Arabia is introducing fingerprinting and full-faced digital photographs for visa applicants. sometime the year 2010, as part of its effort to strengthen security.

There will be a network of service center that will receive visa applications, and take fingerprints and digital photo of those people wanting to visit or work in Saudi Arabia.

The measure is also expected to enable this Mideast country to enforce its rules against workers who were not able to finish their employment contract or who do not have no-objection certificates.  (back)


SAUDI ARABIA HAS NEW AGE LIMITS FOR OFW's

Saudi Arabia has new minimum age requirements for incoming foreign workers. The Embassy of Saudi Arabia in the Philippines annouced that effective immediately, the age requirements for these occupation are as follows:

Domestic helper ......................................         21 years 
Nurse and Flight Attendant ......................      21 years 
Dressmaker ...........................................            30 years 
Salesman for Textile and Ladies wear .......  40 years 
Barber ...................................................             35 years 
Physical Therapist ..................................          35 years 
Family Driver ..........................................           21 years 
Male Worker ...........................................          21 years 
(back)

SAUDIS GET TOUGH ON HUMAN RIGHTS VIOLATIONS 

The government of Saudi Arabia, thru its Cabinet, approved a set of regulations that will further promote human rights of migrant workers and penalize human trafficking. The prominent features of the regulations, recommended by the Shoura Council, include penalties against coercion, threats, misuse of position or influence, taking advantage of the workers’ weakness, coercive service, practices similar to slavery. 

A committee has been formed to monitor known victims of human trafficking and human rights violations. It will ensure that victims are not harmed again, and will coordinate with the authorities concerned to repatriate foreign victims if they so request, or pursue complaints against the offending parties.  (back)


IN 2008, FILIPINO NURSES STILL BIGGEST GROUP OF NCLEX - RN TAKERS 

Among internationally educated nurses, or nurses who finished their course outside the U.S. the Filipino nurses still are the biggest number of NCLEX exam-takers.

Figures from the NCSBN (National Council of State Board of Nursing), show that for the year 2008, there were 20,748 Filipino nurses who took the exams, or 40.4% of the total internationally-educated nurses. The Philippines was followed by India, South Korea, Cuba and Canada.

In 2007 the Filipino nurses took the top spot, comprising 39.7% of the total
Below are the 2008 statistics:  (back)

 
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