On February 11, 2020, Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte officially announced at the U.S. Embassy in Manila that he was coming to an end to the pact, with the denunciation expected to come into force in 180 days, unless otherwise agreed during that period. In the past, Duterte has shown admiration for both Russian forces and the People`s Liberation Army of China, although the Philippines and China are involved in a dispute in the South China Sea over sovereignty over the Spratly Islands. [15] In June 2020, the Philippine government reversed this decision and announced that it was maintaining the agreement. [16] Metro Manila (CNN Philippines) – The Philippines is currently investigating the consequences of a possible exit from a 1998 agreement with the United States on the treatment of its military personnel, known as the Visiting Force Agreement. The United States could also take the opportunity to renegotiate a new, better-value agreement with the Philippines – one that meets President Duterte`s goal of being strong against the United States and the other that gives President Trump the opportunity to mark another important deal, this time a defense deal, with its unique footprint that could advance U.S. interests for years. Under Article V of the agreement, the custody of U.S. personnel whose case falls under Philippine jurisdiction must « immediately reside with the U.S.

military authorities if they wish » from the time the crime was committed, until all legal proceedings are completed. However, U.S. military authorities make the accused available to the Philippine authorities « in a timely manner for investigations or judicial proceedings related to the offence. » The agreement contains various procedural safeguards to protect due process rights and prohibit dual threats. [2] [VIII 2-6] The agreement also exempts Filipino personnel from visa formalities and ensures expedited entry and exit; [2] [IV] requires the United States to accept Philippine driver`s licenses; [2] [V] authorizes Philippine personnel to carry weapons to U.S. military facilities during deployment; [2] [VI] provides for exemptions and import/export duties for Filipino personnel; [2] [X, XI] requires the United States to provide medical care to Filipino personnel; [2] [XIV] and exempts Philippine vehicles, ships and aircraft from landing or port charges, shipping or overflight charges, road tolls or any other charge for the use of U.S. military installations. [2] [XV] The Agreement on Enhanced Defence Cooperation (EDCA), signed in April 2014 under then-President Benigno Aquino III, aims to operationalize the VFA.