January 16, 2018, 11:00 pm
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Filipino architects want slice of Asean market

Filipino architects want to fully harness their profession in Asean with the huge opportunity the region offers.

In a press  conference, members of the United  Architects  of the Philippines (UAP) said while the mutual recognition agreement (MRA) for the practice of profession includes architecture, Asean economies continue to impose stringent requirements to be able to get registration and license in home countries of Filipino architects.

This is one of the topics to be discussed at the first Asean Architects  Congress of the Philippines to be held in Manila next month.

A memorandum of agreement between the UAP and the Philippine Association of  the Professional Regulatory Board (PAPRB) members was signed last March 6 for the conduct of the event which would gather for the first time architects  in the region.

At the end of the  two-day event, the architects are set to come up with a manifesto that would seek among other things  the “mobility” side of the MRA. 

Gerard Sanvictores, PAPRB president, said Filipino architects had been clamoring for the implementation of the reciprocity clause of the MRA where Filipino architects can exercise their right to match in equal terms,  projects in other Asean countries.

Local architects seeking contracts in other countries in Asean  are subject to  domestic rules, and  end up as employes or consultants of companies in the host  countries.  They do not have the authority to sign contracts which somehow restricts the practice  of their profession.

While the MRA provides there is no need to get a  license to be able to  get a job as an architect in Asean, some countries require that non-local architects should have had a vast experience in  “complex” projects  in their home countries.

Fiipino architects also resort to  collaborations  to be able to  penetrate the market.

UAP sees the importance of being able to practice architecture in other Asean countries for  technology transfer as well as for the preservation of the ethnicity of designs  in these countries.

The group said the Philippines has a natural advantage in handling projects designed for disaster resiliency.  Filipino architects  can also share their expertise as they  understand the traditions in these countries 

Out of 28,000 Filipino architects, 62 are registered Asean architects with  58 of them active in the region. These had to go through a strict process of accreditation.

 The objective  is to exercise mobility of architecture as  a profession by  all governments in Asean by  2020.
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