Malacañang has let the Philippine Retirement Authority (PRA) decide the retirement age for foreigners who want to retire in the Philippines.
Presidential spokesman Harry Roque made the statement today after senators have expressed alarm over the arrival of 27,678 Chinese tourists as young as 35-years-old in the Philippines as retirees, saying this poses as a security threat for the country.
Roque said the Palace is letting the PRA decide the retirement age for foreign retirees.
“We will defer to the specialized decision of the board of the Philippine Retirement Authority,” he said.
According to Roque, the PRA, an attached agency under the Department of Tourism (DoT), will convene soon to consider amending the retirement age.
“(The) Board of Directors ng PRA, which has its own charter, will meet and consider whether or not to lift the minimum age for the special retiree’s visa,” he said.
Based on PRA records, about 28,000 Chinese, or about 40 percent of all foreign retirees, have been allowed to enter the country. PRA policy likewise allows the entry of retirees aged 35 and up with at least $50,000 cash on hand.
Sen. Richard Gordon has expressed concern over this fact, saying this poses as a security threat for the Philippines, noting that the age of 35 is a “soldier’s age.”
“Their number is equal to 27 regiments. That’s dangerous. Why would they retire here at 35?” he said.
Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat has ordered the PRA to review and change the policy. “We will move for its immediate repeal,” she said.