Embassy of the Republic
of the Philippines
The Embassy is the principal representative of the Philippine Government in the conduct of its relations with the Government of the United States of America. In this capacity, the Embassy promotes the foreign policy thrusts of the Philippines, to wit:
- Promotion of closer and mutually beneficial bilateral ties between the Philippines and the United States;
- Promotion of national security;
- Promotion of economic diplomacy to support national development;
- Promotion of rights and welfare Filipinos overseas;
- Promotion of Philippine culture; and
- Promotion of a positive national image
The roles and responsibilities of the Embassy cover the following:
- Managing relations with the US government at the federal level through the White House, the National Security Council (NSC), the Department of State and other federal agencies, and with the U.S. Congress;
- Managing linkages with state and local-level governments in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia, and the District of Columbia;
- Representing the Philippine Government and its agencies responsible for policy vis-à-vis Washington-based international organizations such as the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the International Finance Corporation (IFC), among others;
- Representing the Philippines in international conferences, symposia and fora;
- Managing ties with US-based constituencies that are of use in advancing the national interest such as:
- the business community
- the media, both national and international
- the academic community
- the “think tanks” or policy institutions
- the non-governmental organizations
- the Filipino-American community
- Monitoring U.S. policies on various regions especially Southeast Asia, Northeast Asia, South Asia, the Middle East, and Latin America.
Functional Sections of the Embassy and Attached Services
The above-mentioned thrusts and functions of the Post are divided among the following functional sections of the Embassy:
The Embassy is ably supported by the following attached agencies:
Office of the Defense and Armed Forces Attaché (DAFAO)
Helps promote bilateral defense and military relations; coordinates military-to-military programs including the International Military Education Training (IMET) program as well as training programs on anti-terrorism; reports on defense-related policies and developments in Washington, D.C.; interfaces on behalf of the Philippine defense establishment with the U.S. military establishment; and coordinates military visits and exchanges.
Office of the Commercial Attaché / Philippine Trade and Investment Center (PTIC)
Promotes exports and investments in coordination with the Economic Section; facilitates trade projects and opportunities; develops markets for Philippine export products; monitors for and reports to the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) on US trade and investment policies that can affect Philippine trade to the US.
Office of the Agriculture Attaché
Coordinates and assists in the development of food assistance and agricultural and fishery cooperation bilateral programs between the governments of the United States and the Philippines; monitors US agricultural policies that impact on Philippine agriculture; assists in the promotion of increased access of agricultural exports to the US market and further investments from the US in Philippine agribusiness; represents the Philippines in various meetings and conferences on agriculture and fisheries held within the North American region.
PHILIPPINE OVERSEAS LABOR OFFICE (POLO) Washington DC
Monitors US labor policies as they affect trade with the Philippines, labor relations between the two countries and the employment of Philippine nationals in the US; promotes employment of Philippine nationals in targeted sectors of the US labor market through briefings and presentations to employers; coordinates with the consular section in extending assistance to Filipinos overseas workers in the United States and other countries under the jurisdiction of the Embassy such as the Caribbean countries; promotes the welfare and interest of more than 40,000 overseas workers in the US through counseling, mediation of labor cases.
OFFICE OF VETERANS AFFAIRS
In charge of Filipino veterans-related issues, especially the campaign for the implementation of the Veterans Equity Bill. Due recognition was recently given by the US Congress.
Located at Bataan Street corner 1600 Massachusetts Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20036, the Chancery stands directly behind the standing figure of Daniel Webster, the “Expounder of the US Constitution” along Scott Circle. Webster’s statue faces Scott circle from the west. The Statue was donated by Stilson Hutchins, founder of the Washington Post, and unveiled in January 1900 by Jerome Bonaparte, Webster’s great grandson.
The classic lines of the Chancery building allows it to blend with the older, imposing buildings along Massachusetts Avenue. It stands alone on the block at the intersection of 17th Street and Massachusetts Avenue, facing the Johns Hopkins University Building, with the Embassy of Peru at the right side and Beacon Hotel at the back, along N Street.
The Chancery was inaugurated in November 1993 by former President Fidel V. Ramos during his first official visit to Washington D.C.
It is a four-story building with two levels of basement parking that can accommodate up to 36 vehicles. The ground floor serves as the public area of the Chancery where the Philippine Overseas Labor Office and the Carlos P. Romulo social hall are also located.
The second floor is occupied by the Offices of the Ambassador, the Deputy Chief of Mission, and the Administrative Section. The Political-Legislative, Economic and Public Diplomacy Sections, as well as the library, are situated on the third floor. All the offices of the Attached Agencies are in the fourth floor.
The Chancery has five conference rooms – two on the second floor, another two on the third floor, and one on the fourth floor.
The Chancery Annex (The Old Chancery), located at 1617 Massachusetts Avenue, N.W., was acquired on 15 November 1941 from Mrs. Stella Stapleton, wife of Daniel Stapleton, owner of two platinum mines in Ecuador and Colombia.
Although the Philippines acquired the property in 1941, the Office of the Resident Commission did not move in until 1943.
When the Philippines achieved independence and became a Republic in 1946, the Office of the Resident Commissioner became the Embassy of the Philippines, and the building became the Chancery. It continued to be the Chancery until the Embassy moved to a new building across the street at 1600 Massachusetts Avenue.
Renovation went under way in January 2015 to July 2016 involving changes in interior design and layout. Former Secretary of Foreign Affairs Albert F. del Rosario led the inauguration of the newly-renovated Philippine Embassy Chancery Annex on 24 February 2016.
Today, the building houses the Embassy’s Consular Section. The ground floor serves as the public area where consular applicants are received. The entire second floor was converted into a social hall while the back offices are located on the third floor of the building. The other half of the third floor houses the Sentro Rizal of the Embassy.
In November 2018, the Chancery Annex was designated as a Philippine Historical Landmark by the National Historical Commission of the Philippines.
Sentro Rizal Washington DC
Sentro Rizal Washington DC is the 30th branch of the Sentro Rizal, which was recognized by virtue of Section 42 of the Philippine National Cultural Heritage Act of 2009, which specifies a center “whose main purpose is the promotion of Philippine arts, culture and language throughout the world.”
The Washington branch will serve as the primary vehicle through which the Embassy will conduct its cultural diplomacy programs.
Philippine National Commission for Culture and the Arts Chairman and National Artist Virgilio S. Almario graced the inauguration ceremony of Sentro Rizal Washington DC at the Philippine Embassy Chancery Annex on 10 June 2018.