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9 June 2015


Figures from the Philippines’ Department of Tourism (DOT) reveal that the country is on track to breaching a new milestone of attracting more than five million visitors by yearend.  This was expressed by DOT Assistant Secretary Rolando Alan Canizal in a news article appearing in the Philippine Star last May 17.

The Tourism official noted that the Philippines has already achieved 23 percent of the target in the January to March period.  In the first quarter, foreign tourist arrivals broke past the one-million mark anew, rising 6.26 percent to 1,391,836 visitors over last year’s 1,309,872.  Meanwhile, revenues from inbound tourists was estimated at P58.96 billion, up 2.21 percent from P57.68 billion a year earlier.

Assistant Secretary Canizal attributed the growth to the solid performance of key markets and the APEC meetings held earlier in the year.  With the Philippines hosting the APEC event in 2015, the government chose to hold the meetings in different locations outside the capital to showcase the areas as tourist destinations.  They include Pampanga, Bataan, Albay, Tagaytay City, Iloilo, Boracay Island, Bacolod City and Cebu.

Cebu will also host participants of the 10th Ambassador’s, Consuls General and Tourism Directors Tour (ACGTDT), which will be held from July 6 to 10.  Initiated in 2005, the ACGTDT is the flagship tourism program of the Philippine Embassy and Consulates General in the U.S.

2015 is a milestone year for the Tour, as its tenth edition will be staged.  Among the activities lined up is a visit to the historic Malacañang Palace, where participants will be feted to lunch and provided a tour of its renowned museum.  A sumptuous gala dinner at the Sofitel Philippine Plaza awaits the participants later in the evening, with world-class entertainers who are sure to enthrall the audience.

Making the 10th ACGTDT even more special is the trip to the vibrant and progressive city of Cebu, where organizers are hard at work in ensuring an enjoyable and memorable program.  The itinerary includes a tour of the city’s attractions, including Magellan’s Cross and the Basilica Minore del Sto. Niño.  This will be followed by a full-day Suroy Suroy sa Sugbo Tour, with stops at Carcar, Argao and Sibonga.  Festive dinners will be hosted by no less than the Provincial Governor, the Honorable Hilario Davide III, in the first evening and another sponsored by Western Union the following night.

Ambassador Jose Cuisia and the seven Consuls General in the U.S. will again lead the contingent of participants.  Interested parties may still register by visiting ACGTDT.com or contacting the Philippine Embassy or any of the Philippine Consulates in the U.S. ###