Marcos OKs 5-year tourism plan
President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. has approved a five-year plan to give the Philippines a fighting chance at becoming a "tourism powerhouse," Tourism Secretary Christina Garcia Frasco said Tuesday.
Frasco said the National Tourism Development Plan (NTDP) 2023-2028, which will serve as the "blueprint and development framework" for the tourism industry, was approved during a sectoral meeting with the President in Malacañang Tuesday.
"This NTDP is the result of consultations among the tourism coordinating council as well as our various tourism stakeholders from our regions all over the Philippines," she said at a Palace press briefing. "We are very grateful to our President for articulating very early in his administration his priority for tourism development. And this has resulted in a convergence among government agencies as far as giving full support to the development of the industry recognizing the losses that have ensued as a result of the pandemic and various calamities."
Frasco said the program will be launched "in a few, short weeks," as the country ushers in more domestic and international tourists.
The plan "focuses on the essential pillars of development," including the development of infrastructure, connectivity, digitalization, the equalization of tourism, enhancement of overall tourism experience and strengthening of tourism governance.
The Tourism chief said the plan will also serve as a guide for regions across the Philippines "to spread countrywide development through tourism," adding that this will also provide jobs to Filipinos.
"This is just one of the many programs under the Marcos administration that aims to maximize domestic tourism, recognizing its strength to support our economy as well as to usher in more international tourists," Frasco said.
"So we are very thankful to President Marcos for approving the NTDP and we very much are looking forward to instituting all of the programs and plans under his administration all towards the goal of ensuring that our fellow Filipinos are able to enjoy gainful employment and livelihood as a result of the success of the tourism industry and to position the Philippines in a primary role in the Asean (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) and the world," she added.
Frasco declined to say how much the project would cost, saying numbers have yet to be finalized.
"We have submitted an overall proposed financial consideration to the President," the Tourism chief said.
"We are recalibrating that number and we'll be releasing once we've obtained approval from the President," she added, noting that the Philippines would soon mount tourism events.
Meanwhile, Frasco said that an "enhanced" tourism slogan will be released in the next few weeks.
She said the main change in the campaign would be to highlight the "heart and soul of the Filipino that is evident to the Filipinos" such as festivals, food and cultural heritage.
"Everything that makes us diverse and unique and a proud Filipino people that gives us pride of place. We are putting forth the best of the best of the Philippines to the world because it cannot be denied that we do give the world our best and while the DoT has not yet come out with an enhanced tourism slogan as that as a country brand, I assure you you'll love it," Frasco said.
"We very much are looking forward to instituting all of the programs and plans under the administration, all towards the goal of ensuring that our fellow Filipinos [can] enjoy gainful employment and livelihood as a result of the success of the tourism industry," she added.
Source: Manila times