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PEZA given authority to grant 2-year work visas to foreign investors, key employees

The Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) said it now has the authority to issue two-year working visas to foreign investors, key employees, and their dependents.

The PEZA said it signed a memorandum of agreement and agreed to the implementing rules and regulations (IRR) for the visa-issuing process with the Bureau of Immigration (BI) on Thursday. The agreement allows PEZA to issue working visas to foreign investors, non-resident foreign employees of PEZA-registered ecozone enterprises, and their respective qualified dependents starting Dec. 1.

The processing of visa facilitation and approval was also reduced to 10 days from one month under the memorandum.

In a statement Friday, PEZA said the agreement complies with Republic Act 11032, or the Ease of Doing Business and Efficient Government Service Delivery Act of 2018, which authorizes measures to “reduce the cost of doing business and improve the country’s investment growth.”

BI Commissioner Jaime H. Morente said the signing of the agreement and IRR with PEZA “is a major step forward as we expand our services through collaborations with like-minded institutions such as PEZA.”

Enterprises registered with PEZA may submit the visa application of their foreign employees with complete requirements to the PEZA Zone Administrator or Manager in the area where the enterprise is located.

Meanwhile, ecozone companies in Metro Manila involved in information technology-business process outsourcing, tourism, and medical tourism may submit their visa applications at the head office of PEZA in Taguig City.

Requirements for a PEZA visa for foreign nationals include “a notarized application form, notarized company’s letter request addressed to the PEZA Director General, checklist of application for (visa) extension or change of admission, certified true copy of PEZA Certificate of Registration, and photocopy of the foreign applicant’s passport.”

For dependents of foreign employees, the requirements include a notarized application form, photocopy of passport, and a notarized Affidavit of Support/Guarantee executed by the PEZA-registered company’s president or vice president.

Once the new visa is approved and issued, it “will no longer be called the 47 (a)2 visa, but…the PEZA-Visa with two years validity for qualified international employees and their dependents,” PEZA Director General Charito B. Plaza said. – Bianca Angelica D. Anago

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