PRESIDENT Rodrigo R. Duterte has signed a law allowing foreign institutions of higher education to establish commercial enterprises in the Philippines providing educational services and to collaborate with universities here.

Mr. Duterte signed Republic Act No. 11448, also known as the Transnational Higher Education Act, on Aug. 28, according to a statement issued Wednesday by the Palace.

The law cites the need to provide quality education relevant to the changing needs of Filipinos in light of the “rapid developments brought about by globalization, including liberalization of goods and services and expanding use of information and communication technologies, have created a climate for borderless teaching and learning.”

The transnational higher education (TNHE) industry, as defined by the law, covers all types and modes of delivery of higher education study programs, sets of courses of study, or educational services.

Under the law, foreign higher education institutions (FHEI) may establish a commercial presence or provide educational services in the Philippines through various modes or arrangements with a Philippine counterpart.

The law recognizes business models such as Academic Franchising, the establishment of a Branch Campus, and the offering of Joint Degrees with Philippine counterparts.

The law also permits Online, Blended, and Distance Learning; Twinning Arrangements with foreign study components, and Validation, under which an FHEI awards degrees to students who complete a program while studying with its Philippine partners. — Arjay L. Balinbin