M a n i l a

PRESIDENTIAL DECREE No. 657 February 19, 1975


WHEREAS, Presidential Decree No. 223 took effect on June 22, 1973;

WHEREAS, one of the primary functions of the Commission is to have general supervision over foreign nationals who are authorized by existing laws or granted special permits to practice their profession temporarily in the Philippines;

WHEREAS, existing laws invariably require that reciprocity in the practice of the profession between the alien country and the Philippines shall be established before such special permit is granted, which in many cases deprive the Philippines of the services of outstanding experts from foreign countries;

WHEREAS, such requirement of reciprocity serves as a restriction which needs to be corrected in order not to hinder the social and economic development of the Philippines.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, FERDINAND E. MARCOS, President of the Philippines, by virtue of the power in me vested by the Constitution, do hereby decree and order the amendment of Presidential Decree No. 223, as follows:

Section 1. Section 5(j) is hereby amended, so as to read as follows:

"Sec. 5. Powers of the Commission. The powers of the Commission are as follows:

a) . . .

j) The Commission may, upon recommendation of the Board concerned, approve the registration of and authorize the issuance of a certificate of registration with or without examination to a foreigner who is registered under the laws of his country: Provided, That the requirements for the registration or licensing in said foreign state or country are substantially the same as those required and contemplated by the laws of the Philippines and that the laws of such foreign state or country allow the citizens of the Philippines to practice the profession on the same basis and grant the same privileges as the subjects or citizens of such foreign state or country: Provided, further, That the applicant shall submit competent and conclusive documentary evidence, confirmed by the Department of Foreign Affairs, showing that his country's existing laws permit citizens of the Philippines to practice the profession under the rules and regulations governing citizens thereof: Provided, finally, That the Commission may, upon recommendation of the Board concerned, and approval of the President authorize the issuance of a certificate of registration without examination or a temporary special permit to practice the profession to any foreigner regardless of whether or not reciprocity exists in the practice of his profession between his country and the Philippines and under such conditions as may be determined by the Commission, if such foreigner is internationally known to be an outstanding expert in his chosen profession or a well-known specialist in any of its branches, and that his services are urgently necessary either for lack or inadequacy of local experts or if his services will promote the advancement of the profession in the Philippines. The Commission is also hereby authorized to prescribe additional requirements or grant certain privileges to foreigners seeking registration in the Philippines if the same privileges are granted to or same additional requirements are required of citizens of the Philippines in acquiring the same certificates in his country.

Section 2. All laws, decrees, orders, instructions, rules and regulations and parts thereof inconsistent herewith are hereby repealed and modified accordingly.

Section 3. This Decree shall take effect immediately.

Done in the City of Manila, this 19th day of February, in the year of Our Lord, nineteen hundred and seventy-five.

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