Philippines Tourism to review the tourism strategies and targets

Department of Tourism (DOT) is s of Philippines set to review and revise the targets and strategies under the National Tourism Development Plan (NTDP) early next year.

“So we will be reviewing our goals when you talk about gross domestic product (GDP) contribution, direct domestic tourism, etc.,” said Bernadette Romulo-Puyat, Tourism secretary.

Tourism Undersecretary and spokesperson Benito Bengzon said the Junior review is set to begin by the end of January.

“When we review the plan, we will not only review the strategic directions, the programs, but we would also have to look at the performance indicators which would also have to include the number of arrivals, revenue and other economic indicators – employment, GDP contribution,” said Bengzon.

Based on the current National Tourism Development Plan, the DOT is targeting a total of 8.2 million foreign arrivals next year.

“We will probably revise the targets if the closure really affected it,” Puyat said, referring to Boracay, which was closed for a year due to environmental reasons.

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) earlier commissioned a study on the carrying capacity of Boracay, which found that the island and its swimming areas can only support 55,757 people per day. This is composed of 36,542 residents and workers and 19,215 tourists, with 6,405 tourists allowed to enter the island per day.

In order to compensate the decline of tourist arrivals in Boracay due to the restrictions, DOT is planning to propagate the other islands in the country such as Cebu, Siquijor, among others.

Cebu Island

Earlier President Duterte has instructed the inter-agency task force to conduct carrying capacity studies in the country’s other tourist destinations also, in line with rehabilitating the country’s major tourist sites.

The authorities are expecting that setting the carrying capacity for all tourism destinations, not only for Boracay will be beneficial in the long run.