RP targets Germany, Australia, Russia to promote tourism
Quezon City (9 October) -- To reach its target of five million foreign tourists by 2010, Tourism Secretary Joseph Durano said that his department would promote the country in Germany, Australia, and Russia next year.
“This would complement the seasonality of our top three markets now, that is, Japan, Korea, and China. Starting next year, we want to increase the level of engagements in Germany, Australia, and Russia,” Durano told a budget hearing of the Senate committee on finance.
Durano said 89 percent of his department's 1.3 billion pesos would go to promotion, 739 million pesos and 200 million pesos of which would go to international and domestic promotion respectively.
Durano said that in 2004, the tourism target was surpassed by 20 percent and in 2005, by 14.5 percent (2.63 million tourists). He said the 2007 target was 3.5 million tourists.
“We are approaching our 2.8 million to three million tourist threshold this year,” Durano said, adding that as of July 2006, about 1.6 million foreign tourists have visited the country.
Durano said the growth has slowed down because of capacity problems.
“From 1997 to 2004, arrivals have been declining and there was excess capacity. With the growth of the past few years, it's been easy to pack them in. Now we have bottleneck in capacity,” Durano said.
Durano said the tourism industry was very healthy, citing a National Statistics Office survey showing that aside from foreign tourists, seven million Filipinos in the country travel for leisure. (PIA) [top]