ANGELES CITY — The Department of Foreign Affairs’ Office of Consular Affairs (DFA-OCA) announced yesterday that its consular office in Angeles City will open at the Marque Mall on July 30.
The transfer to Marquee mall, along Don Bonifacio, is part of DFA’s move to improve services of its consular office as well as minimizing operational costs for the government.
DFA Cebu transferred to the Pacific Mall in Mandaue City in February 2012 while DFA Pampanga opened in Robinsons Starmills in the City of San Fernando in June 2012.
The DFA regional consular office in San Fernando is open even on Saturdays at the Robinsons Starmills.
DFA-OCA Assistant Secretary Jaime Victor B. Ledda reported that there has been a 16.23 percent increase in passport production from the first quarter of 2011 as compared to the same period in 2012.
“This increase in production translated to 1,381,480 passports issued in the first quarter of 2012, up from the issuance of 1,180,557 passports from the same period last year,” he said.
Ledda explained that in June 2011, the average time to secure an online appointment for passport renewal or application was 10 to 14 working days.
With DFA-OCA’s appointment slots management, personnel rotation and optimization and equipment repair and replacement, the appointment waiting time now stands between three (3) to five (5) working days.
“This figure has exceeded our target of seven working days for an appointment for passport application or renewal,” he added.
Significantly, the improvement in appointment time has also coincided with similar improvements in passport processing time and releasing schedule.
The Office of Consular Affairs, Ledda said, reduced the passport processing time for applicants to 45 minutes to one hour per applicant. It may be noted that in the first quarter of 2011, it took more than two hours on the average to process an applicant.
All other DFA regional offices are set to transfer to other malls before the year ends together with the establishment of satellite offices in malls throughout Metro Manila. ●
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