DFA to establish new consular offices in 2018

Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano.

DFA Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano said the establishment of new consular offices is aimed at helping more Filipinos process and secure by not necessarily moving far from their cities.”Filipino applying for passports have been piling, signifying the need to build more offices to cater demand,” Cayetano noted.

“We’re going to have new regional consular offices in seven to nine places accross the country,” he said, adding that at present, there have been four vans carrying about five machines each already delivered.

Reforms at the DFA are gradually undertaken as it aims to streamline the days of application intervals  from the current online processing of twelve weeks or three months to only seven weeks.”Twelve weeks to seven weeks is the reform” Cayateno pointed out “But still it is not enough, we need to shorten the waiting time.”As it is now, it is very difficult to get  online appointment if the travel period is February since no appointment is available-all dates are closed for appointment.The DFA Acting Spokesperson Robespierre Bolivar on Wednesday said the DFA have 21 Regional Consular Offices (RCO) in various parts of the country and six Satellite Offices (SO) in NCR.

“Any new Consular Office that may be opened in 2018 onwards will be in addition to this existing number, and will further enhance the DFA’s capabilities to provide quality consular service to the Filipino people,” he said.

Bolivar also stressed as per  Executive Order 45 titled “Providing for the Reorganization of Field Offices of the Office of Consular Affairs of the Department of Foreign Affairs” signed by the President on Oct 20, 2017,  all RCOs and SOs shall now be called DFA Consular Offices.-EZC with reports from PNA