“We are full for the first 100 days of the Duterte administration”, said Department of Tourism Region VI Director Atty. Helen J. Catalbas referring to the programs, projects and activities (PPAs) the agency is initiating, conducting, assisting and implementing from July to September 2016.
The events for the first 3 months include financial assistance to tourism-related activities, assistance to multiple familiarization tours of international and local groups in Boracay Island and Negros Occidental, cruise ship arrivals, training and seminars for eco-guides, port authorities, local tour operators, tourism officers, police and community-based groups, participation in various international business missions, national travel fairs and exhibits and ongoing accreditation/survey campaign.
Director Catalbas said the agency will focus on local grassroots level tourism and exert more efforts to upgrade services and products in developing tourism destinations.
“DOT 6 is doing its best to create tourism awareness and participation at the grassroots level and adapt and integrate new ideas and trends through training and seminars. The country is projecting an ASEAN-standard services and products. Thus, in Western Visayas, we ensure that tourism stakeholders and destinations meet the standard that makes our region in the local, domestic and international tourist markets”, Director Catalbas said.
Director Catalbas added DOT 6 makes sure Aklan, Antique, Capiz, Guimaras, Iloilo and Negros Occidental be equitably promoted on the basis of attractions, facilities and services available. She stressed the uniqueness of each province and urge local government tourism offices to highlight these assets when promoting their respective areas.
“All these tourism programs, projects and activities are meant to promote tourism as a medium for a strong regional economy and raise the quality of life of the people in the Western Visayas countryside community”, Director Catalbas concluded.