On Tuesday, philippine President Rodrigo Duterte`s government said it had formally sent the United States an opinion on the closure of the Visiting Force Agreement (VFA), deepening uncertainty about the impact on the U.S.-Philippine alliance. While events are still unfolding and this is only part of the broader relationship between the two countries – which includes not only security, but also economic and inter-existing ties – it is worth considering the real importance of the end of the VFA for the Alliance, the United States and the Philippines, as well as for the region as a whole. The agreement contains various procedural safeguards to protect due process rights and prohibit dual threats.  [VIII 2-6] The agreement also exempts Filipino personnel from visa formalities and ensures expedited entry and exit;  [IV] requires the United States to accept Philippine driver`s licenses;  [V] authorizes Philippine personnel to carry weapons to U.S. military facilities during deployment;  [VI] provides for exemptions and import/export duties for Filipino personnel;  [X, XI] requires the United States to provide medical care to Filipino personnel;  [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.  [XV] The second challenge, Suzette Nicolas y Sombilon Vs. Alberto Romulo, et al. / Jovito R. Salonga, et al. Vs.
Daniel Smith, et al. / Bagong Alyansang Makabayan, et al. Vs. President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, et al. was decided on February 11, 2009, again by the Supreme Court. In deciding this second challenge, Court 9-4 (with two judges who inhibit) ruled that “the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) concluded on February 10, 1998 between the Republic of the Philippines and the United States is in accordance with the Constitution … The decision continued, particularly with respect to the subic Rape case, “… the Romulo-Kenney agreements of 19 and 22 December 2006 are not in accordance with the VFA and the Minister of Foreign Affairs, respondent, is responsible for negotiating without delay with the representatives of the United States the corresponding agreement on detention centres under the Philippine authorities, in accordance with Article V, para. VFA, until the status quo is maintained until further decisions of the Court.  UP professor Harry Roque, an adviser to former Senator Jovito Salonga, one of the petitioners in the case, said in a telephone interview about the decision on the consistency of the VFA.
“We`re going to appeal… We hope to be able to convince the other judges to join the four dissenters.  A3: both countries signed the VFA in 1998. It offers simplified access procedures in the Philippines for U.S. service providers on official stores (for example. B U.S.-Philippines bilateral training or military exercises), and it provides a number of procedures to solve problems that may be present due to the U.S. military in the Philippines. Although Duterte threatened to outsmart U.S. forces in 2016, he clearly benefits from U.S. military assistance in counterterrorism operations.
But in Duterte`s announcement, there is a glimmer of hope: according to the agreement, the official cancellation of the VfA will not take effect for 180 days, meaning that Washington and Manila have until August 9 to save them or negotiate a new VFA to avoid a new alliance crisis. The challenge is that Duterte is an extreme anti-US. President, who could try to eliminate the MDT as a whole in favor of greater autonomy and better relations with China and Russia. But success speaks volumes about the permanence of the alliance, despite the whims of an autocratic president. 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.