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DOT bullish about reaching 3.3M year-end target PDF Print E-mail

MANILA, Dec. 21 (PNA) -- The Department of Tourism (DOT) is optimistic that its 3.3 million visitor arrival target for the year will be met as January-October figures totalled 2.84 million, registering a 15.85 percent increase over the same period last year.

DOT Secretary Alberto A. Lim remarked, “Growth in some markets boosted the performance vis-a-vis last year’s. We are looking at roughly an additional 455,000 tourists which November and December as traditional peak months can deliver.”

The statistical report recorded increases for all 10 months with spikes in January, March, May, July and August of volumes between 280,000 to 325,000.

The DOT remains upbeat about more visitor traffic for the two remaining months and the year to come as it sustains its promotional efforts in the primary international markets through participation in the major institutional travel and consumer fairs as well as through the conduct of sales missions and travel trade and media invitational programs.

Among these are the China Incentive, Business and Meetings Travel Mart, Otdlykh Leisure Fair in Russia, JATA World Tourism Congress and Travel Fair in Japan, World Travel Mart in the United Kingdom and sales missions to various market sources.

The Philippine Pavilion at the Expo Shanghai 2010 gained maximum exposure as it recorded more than eight million visitors from different parts of the world.

In November, the Grand Pinoy Homecoming program was initially launched in the United States, and soon in other areas, to attract a bulk of the 3.9 million overseas Filipinos permanently residing abroad.

Product development and enhancement efforts will include not only perfecting the quality of experience through improved access, service delivery and value-for-money tour packages featuring new attractions and facilities but also improving safety and security measures, one of which is the fielding of more tourist police.

In partnership with the Philippine National Police (PNP), the TOPCOP (Tourism-Oriented Police for Community Order and Protection) program involves training and deployment of police to high traffic destinations to improve visibility to deter crimes against local and foreign tourists as well as to attend to tourist-related crimes or complaints with haste and efficacy.

The formal signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) took take place at the PNP Headquarters in Camp Crame last December 13.

DOT Undersecretary Ma. Victoria V. Jasmin added that, “The goal is to see a 2,000-strong tourist police force by 2011 to be responsible for the safety and security requirements in the top 14 destinations, namely: Manila, Cebu, Zambales, Baguio City, Davao City, Boracay Islands, Puerto Princesa City, Bohol, Ilocos Norte, Negros Oriental, Camarines Sur, Cagayan de Oro City, Camiguin and Cagayan Valley.

Proposed to the Supreme Court, the institutionalization of a 24-hour Tourist Court will step up resolution of cases especially for short-stay visitors.”

These measures have likewise been conveyed to the Hong Kong government in a recent “goodwill mission” led by Secretary Lim.

HK Chief Executive Donald Tsang, acknowledged the gesture and said, “We hope that your visit will go a long way in moving our relations forward." (PNA)































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