As a contract for the execution of the VFA, EDCA authorizes the prepositioning of war materials on approved sites. This includes strengthening the modernization capabilities of the Philippine armed forces. READ: The pH of the military pact with the UNITED States) A5: The termination procedure within the VFA provides for a 180-day delay between the announcement of the intention to withdraw until the official date of the revocation. In the absence of a new agreement, U.S. forces currently operating in the Philippines must leave or find a new legal status. These include U.S. forces helping the AFP fight against Islamic State-linked insurgents on the southern islands. As the AFP and the Philippine government make progress against the insurgents, U.S. support is stepping up and accelerating progress for the Philippines, while slowing or even reversing the spread of Islamic State in Southeast Asia. The VFA is an agreement between Manila and Washington signed in February 1998 on the treatment of U.S.
military personnel in the Philippines. A counter-agreement was signed in October 1998 on the treatment of Philippine military personnel in the United States. If the Philippine government decided to impose an end to the VFA, it would only have to inform the United States in writing of its intention to end the treaty. The agreement will remain in effect 180 days after this notification is sent. Panelo, who also acts as Chief Legal Counsel, said there was no need to wait for a response from the U.S. government because the VFA itself says it can be ended with a written message from one of the two countries. Article 9 of the VFA states that “this agreement remains in effect until the expiry of 180 days from the date on which one of the parties announces in writing to the other party that it wishes to terminate the contract.” As I have already seen in these pages and elsewhere, the U.S.-Philippine alliance is no stranger to stress testing. Since the end of the alliance by the Mutual Defence Treaty in 1951, it has gone through a number of difficult times, from renegotiating the terms of basic agreements in the 1970s to the closure of U.S. military installations in the early 1990s to managing China`s growing persuasive power in the South China Sea in the mid-2010s.
The Philippines, a former U.S. territory that gained independence in 1946, has long regarded Washington as its most powerful ally. In addition to the VFA, it also has a mutual defense contract with the United States.