Representative says Taiwanese not barred from entering Philippines

This image shows the sign of Manila Economic and Cultural Office in Taipei in 2018. (Courtesy of the Manila Economic and Cultural Office in Taiwan, via Facebook)
This image shows the sign of Manila Economic and Cultural Office in Taipei in 2018. (Courtesy of the Manila Economic and Cultural Office in Taiwan, via Facebook)

TAIPEI (The China Post/ANN) — The Ministry of Foreign Affair (MOFA, 外交部) denied foreign media reports on Monday that the Philippines is banning Taiwanese from entry.

Angelito Banayo, chairman and resident representative of the Manila Economic and Cultural Office (MECO) in Taiwan, apologized to Baushuan Ger (葛葆萱), director-general of MOFA’s Department of East Asian and Pacific Affairs, over the matter in a message exchange provided by MOFA’s spokesperson Joanne Ou (歐江安).

Banayo reportedly said that “the statement made by a Health Undersecretary, Dr. Eric Domingo, is not an official position.”

He added that such position was based “on WHO’s political classification and not on health issues which is what his department is concerned with.”

Government agencies of the Southeastern nation, including the Department of Health, the Office of the President, the Bureau of Immigration and Department of Foreign Affairs will convene to come up with a decision on Wednesday morning, according to the message.

In the “meantime, immigration on the ground is not banning Taiwanese entry,” the message read.

Earlier today, foreign media reported that Taiwan is included in the temporary travel ban imposed by the Philippines.

The country’s Health spokesperson Domingo was quoted as saying that Taiwan is considered by the World Health Organization as part of China and that “since we have a temporary travel restriction and ban on China, then Taiwan is included … It is enforced now.”