In a statement, BI Commissioner Jaime Morente said the BI has implemented numerous changes to "ensure that only the legitimate and properly documented foreign nationals may set foot and stay in the country."
The statement came after concerns were raised on the number of Chinese nationals coming to the Philippines.
National Security Adviser Hermogenes Esperon in an interview said that he saw the rise of Chinese nationals as a security concern.
Morente said that the BI sees the increase of foreign nationals as "just a trend" due to external factors.
"The Chinese tourism boom has brought a lot of Chinese tourists to our shores, the same can be said for other countries with popular tourist destinations," said Morente.
"They are everywhere, and this huge tourism market is what the Department of Tourism (DOT) wanted to tap," he added.
The BI also credited the rise of Chinese workers in the Philippines to emerging industries like the online gaming industry. "This is the trend now--yung usong industry--hence the rise (in numbers). We've seen this before, when there was a sudden spike in Koreans in the Philippines during the boom of the English language institutions," he stated.
In a tweet, Secretary of Foreign Affairs Teodoro L. Locsin Jr. called for the ending of the visa upon arrival (VUA) privilege for foreigners stating that all visas should be issued by consular offices after vetting. (PIA InfoComm/BI)
By Susan G. De Leon