Diplomatic History


Diplomatic relations between the Philippines and the United Arab Emirates were established on 17 June 1980.


The government of the United Arab Emirates opened its diplomatic mission in the Philippines on 12 December 1989 at the Century Park Hotel, Manila.


On 17 June 1980, the Philippine Government opened its diplomatic mission in Abu Dhabi. The Embassy premises were at Janana Building along Electra Street in the Khalidiya Area and the Embassy was initially in the care of a Chargé d’ Affaires, a.i. (i.e., Consul Alberto A. Encomienda, from 1980 to 1983, then Minister and Consul General Antonio L. Ramirez, from 1983 to 1986).


The first resident Philippine Ambassador to the UAE was Isabelo J. Astraquillo (1986-89). He was succeeded by the following: Fortunato D. Oblena (1989-94), Roy V. Señeres (1994-98), Amable R. Aguiluz III (1998-2003), Libran N. Cabactulan (2003-2009), Grace Relucio Princesa (2009-2015) and Constancio R. Vingno, Jr. (2015-2018).


H.E. Hjayceelyn M. Quintana is the current Philippine Ambassador to the UAE while UAE Ambassador to the Philippines is H.E. Hamad Saeed Hamad Obaid Al Zaabi.


On 09 April 2004, the Philippines opened a Consulate General in Dubai headed by Mr. Generoso G. Calonge. The Consulate General transferred to its new premises in the Al Qusais district on 28 September 2006 during the term of Consul General Antonio S. Curameng. The current Consul General in Dubai is Hon. Paul Raymund P. Cortes.

Bilateral Agreements | Existing Agreement​

  • Agreement for the Avoidance of Double Taxation and the Prevention of Fiscal Evasion with Respect to Taxes on Income and on CapitalSigned on 21 September 2003 in Dubai. Ratified on 13 April 2005. Concurred in by the Philippine Senate on 15 September 2008. Entered into force on 02 October 2008.

  • MOU between Al Ahli Holding Group with the Bases Conversion and Development Authority (Private sector agreement)[1]: Signed on 8 January 2015 in Manila.

  • MOU on Labor Cooperation (Annex Protocol on Domestic Workers): Signed on 12 September 2017 in Abu Dhabi. Ratified by President Duterte on 08 March 2018. PH has notified UAE of the completion of its domestic requirements and is awaiting the same from the UAE in order for the MOU to enter into force.

  • Confidential Memorandum of Understanding (CMOU) between PH and UAE on Air ServicesPer AE-392-OLA-2018 dated 06 April 2018, OMEAA sent Note 18-2004 dated 06 April 2018 to the UAE Embassy in Manila that the Government of the Philippines’ requirements for the CMOU’s entry into force has been complied with. Pursuant to item VII of the CMOU, the CMOU provisionally took effect on its signing on 28 August 2015 in Manila. President Duterte ratified and confirmed the CMOU between PH and UAE on Air Services and each and every article and clause thereof. Signed 28 June 2017. Completion of the domestic requirements for the entry into force of the UAE side is dated 16 February 2017. The agreement officially took effect on 06 April 2018 or on the date the Philippine side’s notification of completion of domestic requirement for entry into force.

  • Protocol on Domestic Workers Annexed to the Memorandum of Understanding on Labor Cooperation. Memorandum 03949 dated 27 February 2018, OMEAA transmitted the original copy of the Protocol on Domestic Workers (Annexed to the MOU on Labor) signed by DOLE Secretary Silvestre H. Bello III and DOLE Undersecretary Claro M. Arellano. Post was informed that the Implementing Guidelines has already been signed by MOHRE Minister Nasser bin Thani Al Hameli in its fax dated 06 March 2018. Post is following up the copy of the signed Implementing Guidelines with MOHRE and MOFAIC (AUH-M-37-2018 dated 02 April 2018).

  • MOU for Cooperation in the Field of Technical Vocational Education and Training between the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) and the National Qualifications Authority (NQA)Signed by Philippine Ambassador to the UAE Constancio R. Vingno, Jr. and Assistant Foreign Minister for Human Rights and International Law Ahmed Abdul Rahman Al Jarman on 09 May 2018 in Abu Dhabi, UAE. The signing was held during the PH-UAE 2nd Political Consultations and was witnessed by Head of Philippine delegation Undersecretary for Policy Enrique A. Manalo. TESDA has sent a letter NQA to convene a JWG to operationalize the MOU. Post transmitted this through Notes 65-2019 dated 31 March 2019 and 161-2019 dated 01 July 2019.

  • MOU on Cooperation in Sports between the Philippine Sports Commission and the General Authority of Sports: Signed by Philippine Ambassador to the UAE Constancio R. Vingno, Jr. and Assistant Foreign Minister for Human Rights and International Law Ahmed Abdul Rahman Al Jarman on 09 May 2018 in Abu Dhabi, UAE. The signing was held during the PH-UAE 2nd Political Consultations and was witnessed by Head of Philippine delegation Undersecretary for Policy Enrique A. Manalo.


High-Level Exchanges | Visits to the UAE by Philippine officials:

Foreign Minister Carlos P. Romulo, Defense Secretary Juan Ponce Enrile and Solicitor General Estelito Mendoza (Special Mission to Abu Dhabi).

May 1977

DOLE Secretary Nieves R. Confesor together with POEA Administrator Felicisimo O. Joson Jr. and House Representatives Dante Liban and Elpidio Bondoc discussed protective measures and benefits for OFWs.

21 February 1993

Senator Santanina Rasul met with officials of the Ministry of Education and Ministry of Islamic Affairs.

23 June 1993

DFA Secretary Roberto R. Romulo.

24 June 1993

President Fidel V. Ramos and First Lady Amelita M. Ramos (Official visit).

05 to 06 March 1995

Vice-President Joseph Estrada attended the Jubilee celebrations of the UAE and the 30th anniversary of the accession to the throne of His Highness Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan as Ruler of Abu Dhabi.

02 to 04 December 1996

DFA Secretary Domingo L. Siazon, Jr.

22 to 24 June 1997

Ambassador Roy A. Cimatu, Special Presidential Envoy to the Middle East, assessed the situation in the region vis-à-vis the impending war in Iraq.

​2002 to 2003

Presidential Adviser on Overseas Filipino Communities Heherson Alvarez.

13 to 17 April 2003

DA Secretary Luis Lorenzo attended the 2nd Asian Ministerial Conference on the Implementation of the UNCCD.

07 to 11 July 2003

DOF Secretary Jose Isidro N. Camacho and BSP Governor Rafael B. Buenaventura attended an IMF-WB meeting.

23 to 24 September 2003

First Gentleman Jose Miguel Arroyo interceded on behalf of 23 Filipino seamen detained for loan fraud. He was accompanied and assisted by Ambassador Amable R. Aguiluz V, Special Envoy to the GCC, in making representations with the Ruler of Ras Al Khaimah.

October 2003

DFA Secretary Delia Domingo Albert graced the opening of the Philippine Consulate General in Dubai (official visit).

06 to 07 April 2004

DOLE Secretary Patricia A. Sto. Tomas.

21 July 2004

DFA Secretary Alberto G. Romulo as Special Envoy attended the necrological rites for UAE President Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan.

04 to 06 November 2004

Vice President Noli de Castro.

07 March 2005

Senator Francis Pangilinan.

07 to 11 December 2005

DOLE Secretary Arturo D. Brion attended the Ministerial Consultations on Overseas Employment and Contractual Labor for Countries of Origin and Destination in Asia (“Abu Dhabi Dialogue”) and the Gulf Forum on Temporary Contractual Labor.

21 to 24 January 2008

President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo (working visit).

27 to 28 January 2008

DA Secretary Arthur C. Yap.

27 to 29 February 2008

President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo attended the Employment and Business Opportunities Forum in Dubai.

11 to 13 April 2009

DOF Secretary Cesar Purisima and DTI Secretary Gregory Domingo conducted a working visit to the UAE and held a Public-Private Partnerships (PPP) Non-Deal Roadshow. They met with officials of the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority, Abu Dhabi Investment Council, and Abu Dhabi Fund for Development, among others.

30 September to 1 October 2012

Vice President Jejomar C. Binay, as Philippine representative to the Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week 2013.

13 to 17 January 2013

DFA Secretary Albert F. Del Rosario signed the MOU on Political Consultations between DFA and the UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs on 10 September 2013 in Abu Dhabi. Participated in the Third High-Level Public-Private Counter-Piracy Conference on 11 September 2013 in Dubai. (official visit)

10 to 11 September 2013

DFA Undersecretary Rafael E. Seguis attended the 4th High Level Public-Private Counter-Piracy Conference in Dubai.     

29 to 30 October 2014

Official Visit of Vice President Jejomar C. Binay to the United Arab Emirates (UAE).  Meeting with H.H. Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander; H.E. Saqr Ghobash, UAE Minister of Labor; and H.E. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai

12 January 2016 in Abu Dhabi; 13 to 15 January to Dubai

Energy Secretary Zenaida Y. Monsada, head of Philippine delegation, attended the 6th Session of the Assembly of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) and the 4th Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week (ADSW) 2016 in Abu Dhabi.

16 to 18 January 2016

Visit of Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel F. Piñol in Dubai

22 to 24 September 2016

Energy Secretary Alfonso G. Cusi, head of Philippine delegation, attended the 15th Ministerial Meeting of the Asia Cooperation Dialogue (ACD) in Abu Dhabi.

14 to 17 January 2017

Secretary of Foreign Affairs Perfecto R. Yasay, Jr. visited Dubai to meet the Filipino community

23 to 24 January 2017

Defense Secretary Delfin N. Lorenzana, head of Philippine delegation, attended the International Defence Exhibition and Conference (IDEX) 2017 in Abu Dhabi. (Meeting with H.E. Mohammed Ahmed Al Bowardi, Minister of State for Defence Affairs on 21 February 2017 at the sidelines of IDEX 2017)

20 to 23  February 2017​

Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III met with H.E. Saqr bin Ghobash Saeed Ghobash, Minister of Human Resources and Emiratisation

28 February to 04 March 2017

Foreign Affairs Secretary Perfecto R. Yasay, Jr. met H.E. Dr. Anwar bin Mohammed Gargash, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs on 02 March 2017 and His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of UAE and Ruler of Dubai on 03 March 2017 in Dubai.

01 to 04 March 2017

Education Secretary Leonor Magtolis Briones, attended the 2017 Global Education and Skills Forum in Atlantis, The Palm, Dubai

16 to 21 March 2017

TESDA Director General Secretary Guiling Mamondiong visited the UAE on plans to open TESDA training centers in Abu Dhabi and Dubai. Secretary Mamondiong also met the Filipino communities in Abu Dhabi and Dubai

21 to 22 May 2017

Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter S. Cayetano visited Dubai to meet the Filipino community

26 to 27 May 2017

Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Jesus Dureza visited Dubai to meet the Filipino community

01 June 2017

Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III met with MOHRE Minister Saqr Ghobash for the signing of the PH-UAE MOU on Labor Cooperation

12 September 2017

Foreign Affairs Communications Usec. Ernesto C. Abella visited Dubai 

13 to 17 December 2017

Education Secretary Leonor Briones attended the Global Education and Skills Forum in Dubai

16 to 18 March 2018

Undersecretary for Policy Enrique A. Manalo Head of Philippine delegation to the PH-UAE 2nd Political Consultations in Abu Dhabi.

09 May 2018

Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello and POEA Administrator Bernard Olalia attended the Abu Dhabi Dialogue at the World Government Summit

29 to 30 April 2019


High-Level Exchanges | Visits to the Philippines by UAE Ministers and Officials:

Mr. Mohamed Jasim Al Muzaky, Director of Foreign Department, as head of delegation to the 3rd Ministerial Meeting of the Group of 77.

26 January to 06 February 1976

H.E. Hamdan Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Minister of Finance and Industry, and Mr. Hassan Abbas Zaki, Adviser to the UAE President, attended a meeting of the IMF-World Bank.

04 to 08 October 1976

Dr. Mana Saeed Al-Otaiba, Minister of Oil and former OPEC President, presented the golden sword to President Ferdinand E. Marcos.

14 to 18 July 1980

Dr. Mana Saeed Al-Otaiba, Minister of Oil and former OPEC President. President Ferdinand E. Marcos conferred on him the Order of Sikatuna.

11 December 1980

H.E. Hammad Abdullah Al Mutawa, Director General at the Ministry of Agriculture, discussed bilateral cooperation, particularly in fisheries and shrimps.

26 to 30 May 1989

H.E. Mohammed bin Nukhira Al-Dhahiri, Minister of Justice, as Special Envoy of UAE President, attended the Philippine Centennial Celebrations.

11 to 12 June 1998

H.E. Dr. Ali bin Abdulla Al-Kaabi, Minister of Labor, for purposes of signing the bilateral MOU in the field of manpower.

08 to 11 April 2007

Dr. HamdanMusalam Al Mazrouel, General Authority of Islamic Affairs and Endowments, for the Special Non-Aligned Ministerial Meeting (SNAMMM)

14 to 16 March 2010

H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, UAE Foreign Minister, marked the 30th year of the establishment of diplomatic relations between PH and the UAE.

20 October 2010

SheikhaLubna, UAE Minister of Foreign Trade, visited DTI, Manila

20 to 23 March 2013

H.E. Sultan Bin Saeed Al-Mansouri, UAE Minister of Economy, to enhance economic cooperation (with business delegation).

24 to 27 February 2014

H.E. Ahmed Abdul Rahman Al Jarman, UAE Assistant Foreign Minister for Political Affairs, headed UAE delegation for the inaugural PH-UAE Political Consultations in Manila, Philippines

09 January 2017

H.E. Ali Mohammad Al Shamsi, Director of National Intelligence Authority and Deputy Secretary-General of the Supreme National Security Council of the UAE paid a courtesy visit to President Rodrigo R. Duterte

17 October 2018

H.E. Mariam Al Mehairi, UAE Minister of State for Food Security visited PhilRice Research Institute in Nueva Ecija and the International Rice Research Institute in Laguna to conduct a study on PH agricultural technology. Visit was hosted by the Department of Agriculture

24 to 26 Mar 2019

Development Assistance

The Philippines has benefited from scholarship grants and assistance in maintaining mosques/madrasahs (schools) and Islamic centers.

The Sheikh Zayed Foundation, in particular, has financed the construction of a mosque in Jolo, in the amount of USD 2 million.


On December 2006, the Red Crescent Society in the UAE approved the donation of USD 15,000 for the victims of typhoons that battered the Philippines between October and December 2006.

On November 2013 through the national news agency WAM, the UAE government extended its deepest sympathies for the loss of life and property caused by typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda) in the Philippines and pledged US$10 million assistance to the victims. According to Chief of Protocol Shihab Alfaheem, UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the support and assistance would be in the form of projects.

In March 2015, Emirates Red Crescent (ERC) and the Philippine Red Cross have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on the opening of a number of projects for the benefit of those affected by typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda). The MOU included the reconstruction of 10 schools devastated by the typhoon, construction of a hospital in Western Samar to be provided with modern medical equipment, and planning of a new healthcare center in Dolores City, Eastern Samar.

On 10 March 2017, the Emirates Red Crescent (ERC), headed by H.E. Dr. Mohamed Ateeq Al Falahi, Secretary-General of ERC, has successfully concluded and turned over of the following ERC projects for victims of Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda) in the Province of Samar:


  1. Renovation of Samar Provincial Hospital and donation of medical equipment

  2. Construction and furnishing of a Community Health in Dolores, Samar


On 11 March 2017, a groundbreaking ceremony was held in Barangay Maharlika, Taguig for the Secondary School construction project of ERC in cooperation with the City Government of Taguig.

 Economic Relations | Trade 

PH-UAE total trade

US$ 1,520,450,000 billion

UAE ranks as PH’s 16th trading partner

Philippine exports to the UAE

US$ 321,790,000 million

UAE ranks as PH’s 20th export market


Philippine imports from the UAE

US$ 1,198,660,000 billion

UAE ranks as PH’s 15th import supplier


Top 5 exports to UAE:

  1. Input or output units, whether or not containing storage units in the same housing

  2. Cathodes and sections of cathodes, of refined copper

  3. Bananas, including plantains, fresh or dried

  4. Static converters (e.g. rectifiers)

  5. Storage units

Top 5 imports from UAE:

  1. Petroleum oils and oils obtained from bituminous minerals, crude

  2. Light petroleum oils and preparations thereof

  3. Propane, liquefied

  4. Butanes, liquefied

  5. H section of iron on non-alloy steel, not further worked than hot-rolled, hot-drawn or extruded, of a height 80mm or more

(Source:  Philippine Trade and Investment Center – Dubai)

As of October 2019

 Tourism | Visitor Arrivals to the Philippines From the United Arab Emirates 


2018: 15,400

2017: 16,399

2016: 17,634

2015: 16,881

2014: 17,000

2013: 15,155

2012: 12,684

2011: 13,404

2010: 12,734

2009: 10,488

2008: 10,931

2007: 8,490

2006: 6,414


Source:  Department of Tourism (

Filipinos in the UAE (2017) = 645,000 (no breakdown for each Emirate), including 18,713 Filipino students studying in the UAE.

MOFAIC estimates that there were 500,000 Filipinos who visited the UAE in 2017.


Source: MoFAIC

Remittance (2018)

The Philippines is the third-largest remittance-receiving country, after India (top) and Pakistan (second). Filipinos remitted a total of US$ 2,035,298 million or top 5 in OF remittance by country.

1986 - 1989

1989 - 1994

1994 - 1998

1998 - 2003

2003 - 2009

2009 - 2015

2015 - 2018

2018 - present

©2019 by Philippine Embassy in the United Arab Emirates.