More than 2,700 foreigners have been barred from entering the Philippines during the first half of this year, according to figures released by the Bureau of Immigration (BI) today (Wednesday, July 26).
The BI says 2,717 foreign nationals were turned away between January and June, up nearly 40 per cent on the 1,948 visitors barred over the same period last year.
Of this number, the majority were Chinese, with 11,594 turned away.
Other frequently barred nationalities were Indians, with 127 refused entry, Koreans, 117, Americans, 106, Vietnamese, 101, and Indonesians, 43.
Nearly all of the visitors were barred at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA), while the remaining 296 were refused entry at the airports including Cebu, Davao, Clark, Iloilo, Kalibo, Laoag, Puerto Princesa, along with the Zamboanga City seaport.
Most of the excluded foreigners were deemed to be “public charges”, meaning they couldn’t demonstrate the financial means to support their visit.
Others were refused on the assessment of immigration officers that their presence in the country “is inimical to the national interest or a threat to public health and safety”.
BI port operations division chief Marc Red Mariñas said: “That is why among those we have turned away are registered and convicted sex offenders, fugitives from justice, suspected terrorists, previously deported aliens and those who are in our blacklist of undesirable aliens.”
Mr Mariñas added that the list also included visitors who did not have the necessary entry visas or who were not properly documented to enter the country.
In all, the BI processed more than 3.6 million foreigners over the six-month period.