SAN Juan Rep. JV Ejercito Estrada urged the Department of Tourism (DOT) to take advantage of the citations given to the Philippines as one of the top tourist destinations in the world.
Ejercito Estrada made the statement after the Philippines was given the Best Tourism Destination award by China’s English daily, “Oriental Morning Post.” The citation was based on a consumer survey conducted by the newspaper.
Also, American travel magazine “Conde Nast Traveller” recently included the Philippines in its list of “Top Tourist Destinations to Watch in 2013.”
Last week, the Philippines received the “Most Romantic Destination” award from another English daily in China, the “Shanghai Morning Post.” The award was also based on a consumer survey.
“The DOT should now step up its efforts to promote the Philippines as a tourist spot. At the same time, government should implement the necessary reforms to develop the tourism industry,” said the young lawmaker.
He said the government should immediately upgrade major airports in the country and improve other tourism infrastructure to boost tourist arrivals.
The senatorial candidate from the United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) said the government should focus on developing the country’s tourism industry given its potential to create more jobs and provide business opportunities to local entrepreneurs.
Ejercito Estrada said that while the country has many wonderful tourist spots that could lure in travelers, the Philippines is still being edged out by other Southeast Asian countries in terms of attracting tourists. Malaysia, for instance, was visited by 24.7 million tourists in 2011 while only 3.91 million tourists visited the Philippines that same year.
January 22, 2013