MANILA, Philippines- More than 1.6 million international travelers have arrived in the Philippines since the re-opening of leisure travel in February this year, according to the Department of Tourism (DOT) this Thursday.
In the Senate committee hearing, DOT Secretary Christina Frasco reported that the country recorded 1,664,550 international arrivals until this Wednesday.
This is higher from 163,879 international tourist arrivals in 2021.
“Please note that for the internal projections of the DOT, we projected that we would only receive 1.7 million tourists by December of this year,” sabi ni Frasco.
“Therefore, this shows an upward trend in arrivals and the present strategies we have recalibrated and applied since the beginning of this administration have led to an upsurge in arrivals and will allow us to exceed present projections of 1.7 million by the end of the year,” dagdag niya.
Frasco revealed that among the top source markets for this year is the United States with 315,279 tourist arrivals; followed by Korea with 220,402; Australia with 77,249; Canada with 70,159; and United Kingdom with 63,533.
Also, Frasco said it also created jobs in tourism-related industries.
“In my discussion with DOLE Secretary [Bienvenido Estudillo] Laguesma, he said there was a workforce shortage in the tourism industry of over 12,000 jobs and considering that over 8,000 jobs were offered in the job fair, then we are on our way [to] addressing this workforce shortage,” aniya,
“Since this will be a multi-month campaign, we will be conducting until the anniversary of the DOT next year. We hope to be able to fully address the 12,000 job fair shortage by next year,” patuloy ng kalihim.
Meanwhile, Frasco said that the slogan “It’s More Fun in the Philippines” will not be changed, when he presented the 2023 budget to the Senate Committee on Finance.
“Do we have a slogan now [on] how to promote the Philippines?” Senate Minority Leader Koko Pimentel asked.
“Simply, we have not changed the slogan and we have no intention of changing it. Rather, we intend to evolve it, to ensure that this reflects the best qualities of the Philippines,” tugon ni Frasco.
At an earlier hearing, Frasco said “perhaps it is time to revisit the branding campaign of the Philippines.”
Senator Nancy Binay insisted that it should not be replaced.
“Every 6 years when there is a new President, we change our slogan, compared to our ASEAN neighbors which is ‘Truly Asia’, then the ‘Amazing Thailand’, isn’t it like, every 6 years we change our slogan,” said Binay.
Tourism Promotions Board Chief Operating Officer Marga Nograles announced that the slogan will remain, which will be revised “without changing it completely.”
“We are looking to incorporate these into ‘It’s More Fun in the Philippines’, into the brand,” pahayag ni Nograles.
The DOT budget of P3.573 billion for 2023 has passed the Senate. RNT/SA
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