The Philippines is a country in the Far East that has one of the most colorful relationships with other nations of the World. Its history started with migration of races from nearby countries like Malaysia (once named Malaya during the 1500s), then governed as a colony of Spain, followed by the US during the early 1900s, and occupied by the Japanese during the Second World War before finally getting their full independence in 1945. This history has brought the Philippines to be well known to other countries especially during WWII where she was a staunch supporter of the Allied Forces. One of its historic moments is USAFFE’s defense of the Corregidor Island led by the very famous General Douglas MacArthur.
Because of the country’s involvement in many of the famous historic world affairs, the Philippines was given the honor to be one of the founding members of the United Nation with no less than General Carlos P. Romulo as the country’s representative. General Romulo later on would become one of the most respected and brilliant foreign policy makers in the world. The Philippines was also one of the first countries after the Second World War that was elected as a member of the United Nation’s Security Council and a participant in the Far East Asia Organization, International Labor Organization, United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization and World Health Organization. Later on, the country also became one of the first signatories to the creation of INTERPOL. Presently the country is a founding member of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, East Asia Summit, and the Latin Union. The Philippines was also a member of the defunct Southeast Asia Treaty Organization. Declaring itself (the Philippines) as independent of any major power block of nations, the Philippines have now become a member of the Non-Aligned Movement.
Because of these historic ties with the Worlds’ Various Nations, the Philippines have one of the most numbers of embassies and consulates in the World. As of the present, it has foreign relations to about 105 embassies (mostly located in the City of Makati and other prime cities in Metro Manila)some of which have started in the early 1940’s. The foreign relation of the country is left to the management of Department of Foreign Affairs headed by a Secretary and the Philippine President. The Philippine Foreign Policy is based on the advancement of the Filipino Ideals and Values which include the advance of democracy and advocacy for human rights worldwide.
The Philippines has active foreign relations with all their neighbors in Southeast Asia through its membership to the Association of Southeast Asian Nation with the intention of strengthening regional harmony, stability, and prosperity. It is and has been a staunch supporter of East Timor since the latter’s independence. The country has expanded its trade relationship with its Southeast allies such as Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, and now with Vietnam and Cambodia after the two countries’ entry to the ASEAN. Because of the numerous embassies and consulates located in the Philippines specifically in Metro Manila, visitors and tourists from other countries have no reservation from visiting the beautiful and scenic sites of the country.