Status of Visiting Forces Agreement with Australia Ratified by the Philippines
Australia has welcomed ratification of the Philippines-Australia Status of Visiting Forces Agreement (SOVFA) by the Philippine Senate on 24 July 2012.
“I am very pleased that the Philippines has ratified the Agreement. Ratification underlines the strength of the bilateral Defence relationship”, Australian Ambassador, Bill Tweddell, said.
“Australia has a proud history of Defence cooperation with the Philippines. It is an important part of the strong and expanding bilateral relationship which our two countries share.”
Once in force, the Agreement will provide a more comprehensive legal framework for the presence of one country’s forces in the other. It is reciprocal in nature, with the same obligations being assumed by both parties.
The Agreement covers practical issues including immigration and customs; arrangements for visiting forces to wear uniforms while in the other country; and criminal and civil jurisdiction over visiting forces while in the other country.
Australia and the Philippines signed the Agreement on 31 May 2007. Ratification of the Agreement by the Philippines now paves the way for its entry into force.
Australia has similar agreements with, among others, Malaysia, Papua New Guinea, Singapore and the US.