Where to retire in the Philippines

Foreign retirees in the Philippines reached 29,589 as of 15th March 2013 and their number is expected to increase 5 percent annually over the next four years, according to a report by Manila Standard Today.

Philippine Retirement Authority (PRA) general manager Veredigno Atienza said cumulative gross enrolment through the special resident retirement visa (SRRV) as of 15th March this year increased by 26.7 percent from 23,360 as of December 2010.

The SRRV allows foreign retiree-members to retire and live in the Philippines for as long as they want.  The visa is a privilege granted to foreigners who would like to have a permanent resident status in the country.

Mr. Atienza said to attract more retirees to settle in the country, there was a need to undertake a national integrated retirement and aging programme that would make the Philippines aging friendly at all levels of society.

“Our national agenda should go beyond attracting foreign retirees to our shores, but must make life in every locality attractive to all people of all ages, both foreign and Filipino,” he said.

He said for the programme to work, the government should create a Council or Commission on Retirement and Aging that would group established government entities working with retirees, senior and elderly, both Filipino and foreign.

Mr. Atienza also proposed the creation of the Parish and Barangay Retirement and Aging Programme under the supervision of dioceses, parishes and other faith-based groups and barangays and local government units.

Mr. Atienza said the PRA would continue to undertake initiatives to make the country a retirement haven as well as promote new retirement accommodation facilities and launch United States Medicare Philippine trade missions.

The Retirement and Healthcare Coalition International is promoting Manila, Cebu, Dumaguete, Subic/Clark and Calabarzon (Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal and Quezon) as retirement areas.

The retirement industry, which includes housing, healthcare and lifestyle and hospitality, is among the revenue streams of the export services sector. It is one of the components of health and wellness sector, along with medical tourism and spa and wellness.

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