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Frasco invites Japanese to visit PH
TOURISM Secretary Christina Garcia Frasco has invited Japanese tourists to come and visit the Philippines as the Marcos administration implements measures to improve the country’s tourism industry and the overall experience for visitors.
Frasco extended the invitation on Friday before members of the Japanese business community who attended the Philippine Business Opportunities Forum in Tokyo, Japan.
“First of all, allow me to thank the Japanese people for your patronage of Philippine tourism. Prior to the pandemic, we received over 682,000 Japanese nationals into the Philippines, and Japan has traditionally been one of our top source markets,” Frasco remarked.
“And therefore, the interest of our government under our Philippine President Ferdinand Bongbong Marcos Jr. is not only to recover these numbers but to exceed it,” she added.
While the Philippines has always attracted tourists with its natural wonders including its pristine white sand beaches, the Tourism Chief laid out some aggressive efforts done by the national government under the current administration that would add to the attractiveness of the country as a travel destination.
“We’re also improving tourism convenience all over the country by developing Tourist Rest Areas across our 16 regions inspired by the tourist rest areas of Japan. This will provide clean and decent restrooms, information, as well as an avenue for our small and medium enterprises, artisans, and makers to sell local wares and foods,” she said.
“In addition to this, we’re bringing tourism to the digital age by developing a tourist lifecycle app that will provide a convenient manner for tourists to obtain information and book every single aspect of their trip to and around the Philippines,” she added.
Frasco also recognized the need for a centralized platform to hear the feedback and common issues encountered by foreigners when visiting the country. Thus, she announced the Department of Tourism’s upcoming plans to launch a tourist assistance call center hotline.
“We are making sure that tourism development is equal across the board and therefore we’re developing not only our key destinations as well, we are developing our emerging destinations. I know that the Japanese people have an affinity and a love for the province of Cebu, my home province, and therefore we are ensuring that our tourism products in the Philippines for the Japanese continue to be developed especially on the aspect of diving, English as a Second Language, long stay programs, and such other programs,” she added.
“So, I invite all of you, our Japanese friends to dive with our thresher sharks, to swim with our whale sharks, to go canyoneering, to play golf, and to feel and see the warmth of the Filipino people,” Frasco said.