The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) assured evident improvements in the passport system by mid-2018 through expanding its capacity.
DFA Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano said the agency’s passport system would increase its capacity from 19, 000 to 30, 000 a day, allowing it to lessen waiting time for appointment system from the current three months to two weeks or one month.
He said that this target requires them to establish eight new offices and four posts abroad.
The DFA earlier revealed the potential sites of the new offices: Region I: San Nicolas, Ilocos Norte; Region II: Santiago, Isabela; Region III: Malolos or Meycauayan, Bulacan; Region 4-A: Calamba or San Pablo City, Laguna; Dasmariñas City, Cavite, or Antipolo, Rizal; Region 10: Oroquieta City or Ozamis City, Misamis Occidental; Region 11: Tagum, Davao del Norte
Cayetano noted the DFA will ask for financial assistance from the Department of Budget and Management (DBM). He added the agency will also tap the DBM for budget for 10 more passport-on-wheels vans.
Cayetano said the administration now is seeking to address the shortcomings of the previous regime. “As soon as I got in last May 2017, ang nakita ko, hindi tayo nagdagdag ng opisina, hindi tayo nagdadagdag ng tao, ni hindi napro-promote o nagiging regular yung maraming casuals.”
“Last year alone, 600,000 more applied for passports and then the previous supplier, the previous printer that had allegedly corrupted data, so we have to get everyone now,” he stressed.