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(80) NSC on the National Security Policy and Its Organization

24 June 2015 – In line with the current security issues surrounding the Philippines, China, and ASEAN, the 80th Development@Work seminar and forum tackled the who, what, when, and how of the Philippines’ national security. Rear Admiral Vicente Agdamag, AFP, Undersecretary of the National Security Council (NSC) and Dr. Lorenzo A. Clavejo, Director V of the Strategic Planning Office of NSC, discussed the coverage and content of the National Security Policy (NSP) for 2011 – 2016 and the elements, processes and the functions of the Organization for National Security (ONS).


L: Retired Rear Admiral Vicente Agdamag, AFP; R: Dr. Lorenzo A. Clavejo, DPA (Photo by Ms. Jean Labios)

The National Security Policy (2011-2016)

The 15th President of the Philippines, President Benigno Aquino III, describes the National Security Policy for 2011 to 2016 in its foreword as a “people-centered document that lays down the foundation, and provides the enabling environment conducive in achieving security, peace, and prosperity for the Philippines’.”

This document has 7 chapters that cover the decision-making principles and policy objectives and directives for the national interests of the country, the well being of its constituents, and the protection of its sovereignty and territorial integrity.

Chapter 1, the Introduction, defines the content of the NSP and its importance in the successful implementation of the Philippine Development Plan. Chapter 2, the Foundations of National Security, covers the legal foundations of the NSP, the seven elements involved in national security, and the 16-point agenda of the president.

The next four chapters cover the threats, risks, challenges, and opportunities involved in National Security. Chapter 3Strategic Context, discusses how the Philippines stands in a global landscape, as an ASEAN nation, as a developing country, and as a country that faces governance challenges. Chapter 4External Environment, covers the external threats affecting the country. This includes global and regional geopolitical issues, overlapping territorial and maritime claims and other regional concerns, and regional military build-up and weapons of mass destruction. Chapter 5Internal Environment, follows with the internal threats, which include internal armed conflicts, terrorism, and weak institutions. Chapter 6Other Strategic Issues, covers OFWs, transnational crimes, climate change, environmental degradation, disasters and crises, health concerns, and resources.

The last chapter, Chapter 7National Security Policy, Goals, and Objectives, states the policy statement of the State in the context of the circumstances discussed in the preceding chapters. It also states the eight goals of the state, which aims to promote “internal socio-political stability” and to “capacitate the Philippines to exercise full sovereignty over its territory and provide protection to its maritime and other strategic interests.”

Retired Rear Admiral Agdamag also briefly covered the processes involved in converting National Security issues and concerns into relevant output for implementation, the frameworks involved in national crisis management and national security strategy, and the strategic industries for national security.

He ended with the Philippines’ current standing in terms of the National Security Index. At the present, the Philippines rates at 5.5 (Moderately Secure) and is targeting a 7 (Secure).

The National Security Policy (2011-2016) is available on the National Security Council website. The full document (pdf) can be accessed here.


Dr. Clavejo and Ret. Rear Admiral Agdamag answer questions about national security during the Open Forum.

Organization for National Security

The concept of National Security has evolved alongside the constantly evolving environment and challenges we now face. This is why, from the traditional view, the definition and agenda of security has expanded beyond traditional national defense. “Accordingly,” Dr. Clavejo presented, “the evolving changes in the environment have reshaped our approach to national security, widening the scope of traditional arenas, and broadening the methods to address these concerns.” The current concept of national security now concerns itself with the protection and enhancement of our national fundamental values, the ways of life, institutions and socio-political interests of the Filipiino, the welfare, and the well-being and vitality of the citizenry and the state – that is, it now covers the psycho-social aspects the nation, such as people’s perceptions, social norms and character. Now, national security is not only the concern of the military but of all Filipinos.

The NSC defines the Organization for National Security as “the structure of the decision-making and planning process that affects the stability of our nation and the general welfare and well-being of our people.” It is primarily a concern of the Executive branch and was formed for the purpose of formulating national security policies and preparing our national intelligence.

Dr. Clavejo closed his presentation with three conclusions. First, that people empowerment is the best way to achieve the promotion of the welfare and well-being of our people; second, that national security is the concern of every Filipino; third, that if unanimity and solidarity in the attainment of national goals is observed in the Government, we would be more stable and secure.


L-R: Retired Rear Admiral Vicente Agdamag, AFP, Mr. Oscar M. Lopez, Chairman Emeritus of the Energy Development Corporation, Ms. Lizanne Uychaco, Senior VP at SM Investments Corp., Dr. Lorenzo A. Clavejo, DPA, Dr. Kenneth Hartigan-Go, and Professor Anita Celdran, Program Director for MDM at the Asian Institute of Management


Retired Rear Admiral Agdamag and Dr. Clavejo followed their presentations with a video presentation featuring a botnet attack last 2010 which clogged virtual airways in the United States.

An open forum moderated by Dr. Kenneth Hartigan-Go, Undersecretary of the Office for Health Regulation of the Department of Health and Professor at the Asian Institute of Management closed the program.

This seminar/forum was organized by the AIM Rizalino S. Navarro Policy Center for Competitiveness and the AIM Zuellig School of Development Management in partnership with Asia Society.

For Further Reading

NSP Presentation AIM 18 June 2015.pdf (3.4 mb)

National Security Policy (2011 – 2016) – Full Version, PDF

ONS Presentation AIM 18 June 2015.pdf (4.962 mb)

The National Security Council Official Website

Event Photos (Facebook)

About the National Security Council

The National Security Council (NSC) is the principal advisory body on the proper coordination and integration of plans and policies affecting national security. The NSC consists of two distinct bodies - the Council Proper and the National Security Council Secretariat. The Council Proper is a collegial body chaired by the President. It includes concerned officials of the Cabinet and Congress, as members, as well as other government officials and private citizens who may be invited by the President. The Council was created during the Quirino Administration through Executive Order (EO) No. 330, dated 01 July 1950. It was reorganized by virtue of EO No. 115, series of 1986. The NSC Secretariat is a permanent body that provides technical support to the Council Proper. It is headed by the Director General / National Security Adviser.


About the Development@Work Seminar Series

The AIM Zuellig Graduate School of Development Management hosts numerous talks and public lectures on different aspects of development management. These seminars and lectures are free and open to the public, unless stated otherwise. For information on future seminars, visit the News and Events section of this website or like us on Facebook (



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