APEC Business Travel Card (ABTC)
About the APEC Business Travel Card (ABTC)
The Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum initiated the ABTC to promote an facilitate business and investments within the region. The card will help reduce the the time an cost to business travelers in meeting the visa and entry requirements to APEC member economies. Currently, it gives accredited business persons pre-cleared status to the following participating economies:
(1) Australia, (2) Brunei Darussalam, (3) Chile, (4) China, (5) Hong Kong (China), (6) Indonesia, (7) Japan, (8) Korea, (9) Malaysia, (10) Mexico, (11) New Zealand, (12) Papua New Guinea, (13) Peru, (14) Philippines, (15) Russian Federation, (16) Singapore, (17) Chinese Taipei, (18) Thailand, (19) Vietnam.
*Canada and the United States of America are currently transitional members of the scheme, which allow cardholders from all participating countries to use "fast track" immigration lanes at major international airports.
Qualifications of Applicants
• Applicant muste be a Filipino citizen or FILIPINO Passport Holder;
• Applicant must be working in a Philippine-based company;
• Applicant with business travel frequency of at least three(3) times a year for the past three(3) years within APEC region at the time of application;
• Applicant has not been convicted of criminal offense;
• Company must be a PhilExport member of good standing;
• Company/Applicant must not be included in the Department of Trade and Industry's (DTI) watch list.
How to Apply?
APEC Business Travel Card application forms are now available at PhilExport, Export Facilitation and OSEDC Department and can be accessed through at or
Pre-processing fee: PhP 2,500.00 (upon submission of requirements)
Application fee: PhP 2,500.00 (upon release of the APEC Card)
For new applicants:
All requirements must be submitted in two (2) sets
1. Duly Accomplished ABTC Application Form (original plus Photocopy, please see attachment)
2. Recent passport size photograph (3 copies)
3. Original Copy of Valid NBI Clearance for Travel Abroad on the time of Application
4. Original Copy of valid Bureau of Immigration (BI) Clearance
5. Photocopy of Passport Pages with Visa and arrival and departure stamps
6. Summary of Trips (please see attachment)
7. Company Certification stating that the applicant:
- Holds and Executive or managerial position in the company
- Include duties and responsibilities in relation to the Business and Trade in APEC Economies
- Has not been previously denied entry to participating APEC Member countries
- Intends to visit participating APEC member countries for commercial or business purposes for the next coming
8. Resume/Curriculum Vitae (to include statement of the basis/justification to hold an ABTC)
9. Company Profile to include:
- Total Capitalization of the Company (GIS of SEC or Latest Financial Statements)
- Organizational Chart (please see attachment)
- Name(s), Address(s),Telephone/Fax(s) and email(s) of business partners in APEC.
- Past and Current Activities in APEC
- Annual Volume (in peso or dollar) of past and current transactions with business partners in APEC
(please see attachment)
- Other pertinent information to justify issuance of ABTC
10. PHILEXPORT Certificate of Membership
• Pre-cleared short-term entry to particiating economies (no need to apply for visa entry permit for each travel);
• Multiple entry to participating economies (card is valid for three years or upon the expiry date of the cardholder's
passport, whichever comes first);
• Faster immigration processing on arrival via access to fast-track entry and exit through special APEC lanes at major
• Expedited visa interview scheduling at US Embassies and Consulates in APEC Economies.
• For NAIA & Centennial airport, use of the special lane for airline crews and diplomats
*ABTC Philippines may limit the number of ABTC issuance for officials representing one company, depending on the company size, capitalization or type (e.g. family-owned).
For More Information, Please Contact
Export Facilitation & OSEDC
Ms Dianne D.V. Masalunga
Tel./Fax No.: (632) 230-5555 loc. 539/
Export Facilitation Staff:
Ms Lyza Minelly Macabuag
Ms Rowena P. Segundo
Ms Saria Ana Agbayani
Tel. Nos: (632) 505-1328; 935-1025
Fax. No: (632) 831-2132
Philippine Exporters Confederation, Inc.
ABTC - Philippine Desk
Ms Danica Vismonte
ABTC Philippine Desk Officer
Mr Francis Rryan D. Gener
Telefax: (02) 836-7763
Atty Cris Villalobos
Magallanes Drive, Intramuros Manila
Tel. Nos.: (632) 465-2400 local 406/411
Direct Line: (632) 527-5376
Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA)
Office of the Consular Affairs
Bureau of Immigration (BI)
FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)
1. As a businessman, is it my right to hold an ABTC?
Possession of an ABTC is not a right but a privilege, granted to bona fide business persons directly engaged in the trade of goods and investment activities within the APEC economies. All applications are evaluated based on merit, which includes the nature of the business, the designation and job description of the applicant, frequency of travel to the APEC economies, and actual need for a card, among others, pursuant to the evolving standards of APEC economies, the Philippines included.
2. Who can apply for an ABTC and how many per company?
ABTC Philippines sets the limit on the issuance of cards per company. For a large enterprise, it is normally limited to those occupying the three highest management tiers. For medium-small enterprise, it is limited to the two highest tiers. While the APEC Operating Framework identifies the applicant as one that occupies a senior executive level business person, said applicant must hold a specific authority to commit trade and investment activities, such as the one that can negotiate and sign contracts. On this aspect, those eligible for the card would normally hold the position of Chairman, Chief Executive Officer, Chief Operating Officer, Managing Director, Vice President, or the equivalent.
3. I am a Consultant to a company, am I qualified to apply for ABTC?
No, Consultants are not qualified.
4. I am not a Filipino but a citizen/passport holder of one of the participating APEC economies, can I apply for ABTC here in the Philippines?
No, ABTC Philippines only accepts Filipinos or Philippine passport holder applicants. Citizens of other APEC economies should apply to their mother country. This policy is applied to all APEC participating economies.
5. I am not a citizen or passport holder of any of the participating APEC economies, can I apply for an ABTC?
An applicant must be passport holder of a participating economy i.e. citizen (or a Hong Kong permanent resident with any valid travel document-this only applies to Hong Kong)
6. I am a Filipino but I am working overseas, can I apply for an ABTC in the Philippines?
An applicant must be based here in the Philippines to be qualified. OFWs are not qualified unless his company abroad has a branch here in the Philippines. Approval of application is still subject for evaluation. See item number 2.
7. I am just renewing my ABTC. Should I expect a guaranteed approval?
Prior issuance of a card is not a guarantee of an approved application, nor does it give any advantage over a first-time application. Applicants must still pass the qualification and requirements for ABTC. Renewals are always treated as new, hence, 3-4 months is still the length of processing time just like a new application.
8. I only traveled once or twice a year for the past three (3) years, is that enough to qualify for ABTC?
Five (5) trips per year for the past five (5) years is the strict minimum requirement for the record of travels. This is also applied for renewal applications. An applicant must establish that he is a business person that travels frequently to conduct business
activities within the APEC region.
9. Can I refund my payment in case my application is denied by PHILEXPORT or DFA?
No, the processing fee is non-refundable. The management already decided to have the payment in two (2) installment to lessen the loss of applicants in case the application is denied.