Philippines immigration officers to get friendship training

Published:  29 May at 6 PM
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Filipino immigration chief Siegfried Mison has released details of his plan to create an enviably pleasant experience for all migrants and other visitors arriving at the country’s air and sea entry points.

According to Mison, friendlier, customer-oriented officials will greet new arrivals at airports and seaports with traditional Filipino hospitality. The new programme, Bi CARES is due to go live in June this year.

Mison explained to reporters that Bi CARES represents courtesy, accountability, responsibility, efficiency and service, and is aimed at making arrivals feel at home right from the start. He noted that immigration officers will be expected to be brand ambassadors for the country, offering helpful information on many subjects as well as the immigration laws.

Professor Eric Soriano, a branding expert involved in the new initiative, said visitors and new arrivals would find the entire experience far easier than in the past. At the same time, he added, officers will continue to be strict about those leaving the country on fake documents, and the fight against human trafficking will be toughened up.

Additional manpower will be employed at airports and ports, with more people available to help when needed and the previous long queues at airports hopefully cut back as a result. Mison apologised to those affected by the queues in the past, and added that a proactive approach will be brought in to help solve any problems.
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