By Ferdinand Patinio

(PNA file photo)

MANILA – The Bureau of Immigration (BI) recorded an almost 24 percent increase in its revenues from tourist visa extensions in 2023.

According to BI tourist visa section chief Raymond Remigio, the bureau recorded a total revenue of PHP1,426,076,164 last year, compared to PHP 1,153,748,535.50, marking an increase of 23.6 percent.

He attributed the increase to the revived interest in international travel after the pandemic.

Commissioner Norman Tansingco, meanwhile, said the data reflects their efforts to make compliance with regulations easier for tourists by opening new offices and setting up their online services for the convenience of the transacting public.

“We are one with the Department of Tourism in their campaign to reinvigorate international travel and tourism in the country,” he said in a statement. “Faster and easier immigration service is our contribution to the national government’s efforts.”

Visa-free nationals are given an initial stay of 30 days, which they could extend in any BI office nationwide or via the BI’s online platform at e-services.immigration.gov.ph. (PNA)