Lapu mobilizes youth for tourism dev’tCebu Daily News
AROUND 200 members of the Sangguniang Kabataan Federation of Lapu-Lapu City gathered in a cultural mapping workshop yesterday at the Lapu-Lapu City Sports Complex.
The participants were taught to develop and promote new tourism products to attract more tourists to Lapu-Lapu.
Mayor Paz Radaza earlier announced that the city will be promoting Olango Island as the tourism frontier.
A series of activities and programs are now being created to carry out this vision.
Mayor Radaza, in a recent speech to the Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) and barangay officials cited reports that in 2011 tourism contributed P30.1 billion to Cebu’s gross domectic product (GDP).
Economist Fernando Fajardo wrote in his Cebu Daily News column that the P30.1 billion contribution to Cebu GDP is even conservative.
He noted that the actual figures could even be higher if Cebu’s higher tourist population to nationwide average was considered.
Using data from the Department of Tourism, Radaza said 60 percent of foreign tourists in Cebu stay in Lapu-Lapu City.
“I can just imagine how many billions of pesos our city’s tourism contribute to the Cebu GDP.” Radaza said.
Radaza however acknowledged that Cebu, specifically Lapu-Lapu City has a lot of catching up to do as other Southeast Asian tourist spots have been registering millions of tourist arrivals.
Bali in Indonesia attracted 2.5 million foreign tourists in 2010 while Phuket in Thailand had 1.6 million.
Fajardo said Cebu had one third or just over 800,000 foreign tourists in 2010.
“There is so much work to be done. We have to move fast.” Radaza said.”
She explained that the SKs are gathered to undergo a cultural mapping workshop so they can develop new tourist attractions and promote it at the soonest possible time.
She said she was very proud that the youth represented by the SK have answered her call to help the city in opening up Olango Island as the new tourism frontier and in creating a new tourist attraction.
She told the youth that their work is cut out for them, saying they have the energy and the vigor to go to the field and conduct research.
After the SKs are done with the cultural mapping in their respective barangays, they will report the result of the research.
Then with tourism experts, they will be able to create new tourism products that they are going to sell to the world.
“And because you are digital natives who live and breathe Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other social media you will be able to help the city promote our brand new tourist attractions in the World Wide Web,” the mayor said. /Norman V. Mendoza, Correspondent