June 11, 2019
TOURISM managed to contribute 12.7 percent to the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) in 2018, up 0.5 percent from 12.2 percent the year before, despite the six-month closure of Boracay island last year, according to the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA).
Data from the state-run statistics agency — which were provided by the Department of Tourism — showed that the Tourism Direct Gross Value Added hit P2.2 trillion last year, a 14.3-percent increase from 2017’s P1.9 trillion; and domestic tourism expenditure rose by 21 percent to P3.2 trillion in 2017 from P2.6 trillion a year earlier.
Domestic tourist arrivals reached 110 million last year — a 14.1-percent growth from 96.4 million the year prior — exceeding the government’s 2022 target of 89.2 million, as stated in its National Tourism Development Plan.
Industry employment, meanwhile, climbed by 1.8 percent to 5.4 million last year from 2017’s 5.3 million.
In a statement on Sunday, Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat said the data showed how sustainable the Philippine tourism industry was.
The numbers achieved are the “result of a holistic and convergent government,” she added.
She called the industry “an engine for socioeconomic growth that provides jobs and income to the country, while preserving Filipino culture and tradition, as well as conservation of the environment.”
According to her, the Duterte administration’s massive infrastructure program helped bolster the confidence of tourists and businessmen.
“The ‘Build Build Build’ program of the administration has greatly improved infrastructure and transport connectivity, while the ease of doing business, coupled with a facilitative environment for investments, has boosted both visitor and investor confidence in Philippine tourism,” she said.
Meanwhile, the Boracay Inter-Agency Task Force — made up of the Tourism, Environment and Interior departments — said five more tourist establishments with a combined 45 rooms in Boracay have been accredited.
As of June 4, 358 establishments with a total of 12,952 rooms are now open on the world-famous island, which was closed to tourists between last April and October for environmental rehabilitation.
Credit belongs to : www.manilatimes.net