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Arriving foreigners, Filipinos from abroad now required to fill out, submit arrival cards

By: - Reporter / @KHallareINQ
/ 12:06 PM February 08, 2020
Immigration officers man their post at the Naia Terminal 1. INQUIRER FILE PHOTO / LYN RILLON

Immigration officers man their post at the Naia Terminal 1. INQUIRER FILE PHOTO / LYN RILLON

MANILA, Philippines — Amid the 2019 novel coronavirus scare, the Bureau of Immigration (BI) on Saturday said all foreigners and Filipinos arriving from abroad are now required to fill out and submit arrival cards while being processed by airport immigration personnel.

In a statement, the BI said Immigration Commissioner Jaime Morente has ordered to “strictly enforce” the new policy.

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This policy, the BI added, is a way for the bureau to assist health and police authorities in the contact tracing of passengers who have recently been to China, Macau and Hong Kong—the three areas where a temporary travel ban is currently being enforced.

President Rodrigo Duterte previously imposed the temporary travel ban upon the advice of key government officials.

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The BI added that its immigration regulation division is now “strictly screening” the applications of extension of stay of foreign tourists. This is to check if any of them have a history of travel to China, Hong Kong, and Macau within 14 days from their arrival in the Philippines.

Morente said a visa extension applicant covered by the restriction will be turned over to the Bureau of Quarantine (BOQ) for medical assessment.

The BI added that 36 Chinese nationals were barred from entry, after they were found to have traveled from Macau last Feb. 1.

The Chinese nationals said BI Port Operations chief Grifton Medina, were barred from entry at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport Terminal 1 upon arriving from Phnom Penh, Cambodia.

They were turned over to the BOQ for inspection and later excluded. They were booked on the first available flight to Phnom Penh, the BI added.

Edited by MUF

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TAGS: Bureau of Immigration, China, Hong Kong, Macau, novel coronavirus
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