Vice President Jejomar Binay has asked the Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA) to suspend its decision to integrate the terminal fee into air fares as it contravenes the law that provides exemption from payment of travel tax and airport fee for those with jobs abroad.
“I write with utmost urgency to seek the suspension of MIAA Memorandum Circular (MC) 8 directing the integration of the P550.00 International Passenger Service Charge (IPSC) into the airline tickets at the point of sale insofar as it directly affects our overseas Filipino workers (OFWs),” Binay said in a letter to MIAA General Manager Jose Angel Honrado.
“While I fully understand the primary objective of MIAA MC 8 to promote smoother, seamless, convenient, safe and hassle-free travel experience at all our airport terminals, the integration of the IPSC into the airline tickets unfortunately has adversely affected the rights of our OFWs under Republic Act 8042, as amended by RA 10022 [Migrant Workers Act of 1995],” Binay, the Presidential Adviser on OFW Concerns, added.
The Vice President argued that while the circular entitles OFWs to reimbursement of IPSCs assessed on the plane tickets they have purchased, “the fact of their payment is a violation of the Migrant Workers Act of 1995 and, more important, contributes to their financial burden.”
Binay said he welcomes Honrado’s express commitment to discuss the issue with airline carriers and refer it to the MIAA board for its favorable approval in light of a Senate hearing initiated by Sen. Nancy Binay and conducted by the Senate committees on public services and on labor on February 9.
He had cried foul over implementation of the circular on the IPSC in October last year, saying while efforts to improve airport service are welcome, changes that entail imposing fees and charges on OFWs should not be done unilaterally.
“I call on the [MIAA] and the Department of Transportation and Communications to defer the implementation of the IPSC scheme, and seek a dialog with our OFWs and other stakeholders. We owe it to our OFWs to listen to their voices and address their concerns over the IPSC,” Binay said.