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Aliens need exit clearance, says immigration bureau

/ 05:34 AM January 15, 2014

Bureau of Immigration building. Photo from Bureau of Immmigration website

MANILA, Philippines—The Bureau of Immigration (BI) has warned foreigners that the policy requiring an emigration clearance certificate (ECC) before they leave the country will be strictly enforced this year.

Immigration Commissioner Siegfred Mison said Tuesday the ECC is being issued to departing foreigner nationals to prove that they have no derogatory records in the country or any accountability with other government agencies.

There are two types of ECC that can be secured at any BI satellite office in the country and airports: The ECC-A is being issued to foreigners who have tourist visas extending for more than six months. The ECC-B, on the other hand, is given to holders of immigrant and non-immigrant visas with valid alien certificate registration I-Cards.

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Immigration officials said the ECC has been a requirement for departing foreigners since the leadership of Immigration Commissioner Ricardo David but it was only now that it would be strictly implemented and monitored.

Mison likewise warned foreigners not to procure fake ECC forms that are being offered by fixers, dubious law offices and shady travel agencies. He said an alien found in possession of spurious documents will be charged with violation of immigrations laws.

The new directive came amid warnings about foreign nationals who are involved in illicit drug trafficking and cybercrimes.

“Before, foreigners saw the Philippines as a haven of fugitives. Now, with honest enforcement of immigration laws, we are able to frustrate those who want to just stay here because they have cases abroad,” the immigration commissioner said in a statement.

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TAGS: emigration clearance certificate (ECC), exit clearance, Immigration, Philippines
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