The BGA Philippines Team led by Managing Director Victor Andres Manhit, wrote an update to clients on a significant and sudden change in national defense leadership.


  • Philippine President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. recently named several new heads of the government’s defense institutions, replacing his first set of appointees. The new defense leaders have all served in several top military posts in the Philippine army.
  • The government immediately denied rumors that the speed and scope of the resignations could destabilize the Marcos administration. Changes in the Philippines’ military leadership are not new, with former appointees serving terms as short as three months, and the president has the prerogative as commander in chief to choose the leadership of all government agencies in the Philippines.


  • Gen. Andres Centino of the Philippine Army was reappointed chief of staff of the Armed Forces of the Philippines. He previously served in the same position during the administration of Rodrigo Duterte and is credited with notable achievements in tackling the Philippines’ communist insurgency. 
  • Retired Gen. Carlito Galvez Jr. is the new defense secretary replacing Department of National Defense Senior Undersecretary Jose Faustino Jr. He served under the previous administration from 2018-22 as the presidential adviser on the peace process in the southern province of Mindanao.
  • Retired Gen. Eduardo Año is the new national security adviser, replacing university professor Clarita Carlos, who will join the Congressional Policy and Budget Research Department of the House of Representatives. During the previous administration, Año served as the secretary of the Department of Interior and Local Government from November 2018 to June 2022.


  • The business climate in the Philippines remains stable, and the government will continue to prioritize economic recovery and diplomatic engagements to attract foreign investment. The administration’s immediate focus is to address the country’s high inflation rates, to which the economic fallout from the Russia-Ukraine war has contributed.
  • Marcos gave an assurance that his administration will continue to strengthen the Philippine economy.  Speaking to media before flying to Switzerland to attend the World Economic Forum on January 15, the president said efforts will be focused on building resilient infrastructure, ensuring food security and furthering clean and green energy to power the Philippine economy.

BGA will continue to keep you updated on developments in the Philippines as they occur. If you have any questions or comments, please contact Philippines Managing Director Victor Andres Manhit at