Philippines sets conditions on entry of foreigners starting Feb. 1

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jan 29 2021 09:56 AM

Passengers wearing hazmat suits for protection against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) walk inside the Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Parañaque, Jan. 14, 2021. Eloisa Lopez, Reuters/File

MANILA — The inter-agency task force leading the country's COVID-19 response has set conditions on the entry of foreign travelers into the country next month, Malacañang said on Friday. 

The IATF, which met on Thursday, said foreign nationals who will arrive in the Philippines from Feb. 1 "should have valid and existing visas at the time of entry, except for those qualified under the Balikbayan program under Republic Act No. 6768 or the Act Instituting the Balikbayan Program," said Palace spokesman Harry Roque. 

"These foreign nationals should also have a pre-booked accommodation for at least seven nights in an accredited quarantine hotel or facility," he said in a statement. 

"They shall also be subject to COVID-19 testing at the quarantine hotel or facility on the sixth day from the date of their arrival," the official added. 

The entry of these foreign nationals "will be subject to the maximum capacity of inbound passengers at the port and date of entry," said Roque.

The Philippines has tallied some 519,000 COVID-19 cases as of Thursday. The unrelenting first wave of infections has barred the economy from fully reopening.