The paper aims to identify the facilitating and deterring factors affecting the implementation of the ASEAN Mutual Recognition Arrangements (MRAs) in engineering, nursing, architecture, surveying, medical, dental practice, and accountancy. On the overall, the progress of MRA implementation in the Philippines has been slow. For all professions, the issue of enacting new rules and/or regulations has been difficult due to the constitutional and other restrictions. Clear procedures and guidelines should be formulated for the implementation of the reciprocity provision. For temporary special permits, the law needs to be revised to allow complete borderless practice.Interviews and survey results on the facilitating factors affecting MRA implementation include the following: making MRA implementation a vital component of the national government agenda, awareness programs, close coordination between professional bodies and government, and projects to facilitate improvements in the quality of practice and address sector issues. The important deterring factors affecting MRA implementation include absence of a comprehensive program to implement the MRAs; lack of comprehensive databases, research studies on best practices, and review of foreign reciprocity; and absence of a coordinating body.Both the Professional Regulatory Commission (PRC) and the Department of Labor and Employment are currently in the process of putting policy measures in place to facilitate MRA implementation in the country. To move the implementation of the MRAs forward, the paper highlights the need to continue efforts to improve the process and create clear criteria for the labor market test and the skill shortage list. The paper also suggests the formulation of clear rules and guidelines in implementing the foreign reciprocity provision; strengthening the capacity of PRC as the central body coordinating the different MRA activities; and crafting of a comprehensive and strategic framework on MRA implementation.
professional services Philippines ASEAN mutual recognition arrangements