Latest Stories

Underwater biodiversity to bring in more tourists

Diving makes 25% of total tour revenues

The Department of Tourism (DOT) is planning to makediving as one of the major drivers in promoting the Philippines.

“If you come to the Philippines and you don’t like what you see on land, just stick your head under water and you will be okay,” said Tourism Secretary Ramon Jimenez Jr. during yesterday’s World Deep (Diving Expo and Exhibition Philippines) in Shangri-La Mactan Resort and Spa in Mactan Island.

Jimenez said the tourism department would now be banking on the Philippines being the center of biodiversity in their marketing strategy.

“We will make diving in the Philippines, a major force for tourists to come,” he said.

The dive expo organized by Philippine Commission on Sports and Scuba Diving (PCSSD) and Philippine Association on Underwater Activities (PAUA) and the DOT were attended by at least 130 representatives from different dive organizations from all over the world.

The three-day event is a venue for cultural exchanges and bilateral talks between members of World Confederation of Underwater Activities (CMAS) about diving and underwater policies.

The Philippines is considered as the global center of marine biodiversity based on the study of an American biologist entitled Center of the Marine Shore Fish Diversity: the Philippine Islands published by the World Bank in 2007.

The revenue in diving makes up a quarter of the total tourism revenue.

Divers, according to Jimenez, accounts to not less than five percent of the country’s tourists.

diving destination

Karen Chan, executive director of PCSSD, an attached agency of the DOT said 15 percent of foreign tourists come here for diving.

“Divers tend to stay longer and have a lot of activities included in their regular tourism,” Jimenez said.

Aside from its monetary contribution the economy, promoting the Philippines as a world-class diving destination puts environmental protection an advantage.

“The biggest benefit in propagating diving in this country is that it forces us to preserve our ocean,” Jimenez said.

DOT Central Visayas Regional Director Rowena Montecillo said protecting the environment from being exploited is very important.

subset of tourism

The secretary said he would meet with Department of Interior and Local Government, Department of Environment, Department of Agriculture among other government agencies to discuss the DOT’s direction to make diving a subset of tourism.

According to Montecillo, diving is the top tourist activity in the region.

In Cebu, dive tourists are concentrated in the dive resorts in Malapascua island in the north and Moalboal in the south.

“We are the center of biodiversity in this part of the world. It is important that we raise awareness in protecting the environment,” Jimenez said.

For Cebu to become a successful tourist destination in the world, the people must love diving.

underwater sports

Benedict Reyes, president of PAUA said it is also important to engage the youth in underwater activities such as aquathlon, underwater hockey, underwater rugby, fin swimming, underwater photography among others.

The three-day expo includes at least 50 exhibitors of different dive attractions in the country including the showcase of the Department of Science and Technology’s coral rehabilitation programs in the country which started last year./Reporter Marian Z. Codilla

Follow Us

Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter

Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: Department of Tourism (DOT) , Tourism

Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
  1. Fr. Suarez says last Mass on Easter before returning donated land to San Miguel
  2. Chinese lawyers say they were tortured by police
  3. Hair salon’s Kim Jong Un poster riles embassy
  4. Why college grads end up in the PNP
  5. I’ll follow my conscience on Estrada, says JV Ejercito
  6. Town, DENR play tug-of-war over crocodile
  7. Five men from Cavite found dead in jeep in Batangas
  8. Suspect in Vhong Navarro mauling tries to leave PH
  9. Siquijor ‘healer’: For every cure, there’s a plant
  10. Motorcycle race ends in shooting; 1 killed, 6 hurt
  1. Suspect in Vhong Navarro mauling tries to leave PH
  2. Massage attendant arrested on rape complaint filed by Japanese tourist
  3. ‘Tell no one’ Makati bettor won P250M lotto
  4. MH370 co-pilot made mid-flight phone call – report
  5. Netizens cry: 6/55 Lotto was rigged
  6. ‘Wife of Jesus’ theory papyrus not fake – Harvard study
  7. North Korea uses flamethrower to execute official
  8. ‘King’ Yabut and I: Driver bares Makati dad ‘abuses’
  9. Gay college instructor arrested for oral sex with student
  10. It was difficult having Japanese blood
  1. KL confirms Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370 ended in Indian Ocean
  2. MRT passengers pass the hat for 6-year-old Ashley
  3. Pork payoffs to newscasters Erwin Tulfo, Del Prado, others bared
  4. UP back on top as ‘average’ student aces bar
  5. Rookie, lady cops lauded for quick response to MOA heist
  6. Model Helena Belmonte wished ‘to slash her wrist and hope to die’
  7. Malaysia averts another air tragedy; pilot lands troubled plane safely
  8. Revilla says he was joking; Lacson stands by his story
  9. Revilla ‘consulted’ Lacson on how he evaded arrest
  10. Police rule out foul play in Helena Belmonte’s death as boyfriend is ‘traumatized’


  • Supremacist faces murder charges in Kansas deaths
  • Luzon grid power reserve ‘enough’ for Holy Week
  • Pimentel proposes incentives for companies that will hire ex-convicts
  • State seeks guilty verdict for Abalos
  • SBMA execs, 2 others face graft raps
  • Sports

  • My ideal weight is 140, declares Pacquiao
  • Freddie Roach: I’m satisfied; Manny Pacquiao did well
  • New-look Azkals tie Qatari side
  • San Miguel Beermen eye No. 2 slot, battle Air21 Express
  • Filipinos yield to Iraqis anew Asian club volley
  • Lifestyle

  • Celebrate Easter Sunday at Buddha-Bar Manila
  • Moriones feast: A slow, steady transformation
  • Weaving ‘palaspas’ a tradition kept alive in Tayabas City
  • Finalists announced for best translated books
  • Summer treat for your aspiring astronomers
  • Entertainment

  • Miley Cyrus hospitalized, cancels US concert
  • Otaku Summer Jam 2014: Summer’s hottest J-rock/Cosplay event
  • 2NE1 returns to Manila with “All Or Nothing” Tour
  • Gary Valenciano just keeps moving
  • Noisy celeb spews venom, backs off when confronted
  • Business

  • Longer TRO sought on rate hike
  • Make a stylish statement with the all-new Yaris
  • Hearing set in Olarte case
  • BOC sues steel importers
  • BIR continues to miss collection target
  • Technology

  • Tech company: change passwords or suffer ‘Heartbleed’
  • Filling the digital talent gap
  • SSS to shut down website for Holy Week
  • Another reason to quit social media this Holy Week: your safety
  • Philippines may watch ‘blood moon’ online
  • Opinion

  • We may never know
  • Couple of things
  • Mommy D’s magic
  • Stop bizarre and bloody Good Friday rituals
  • Holy Week taboos
  • Global Nation

  • No travel restrictions to Middle East amid MERS-CoV scare
  • Measures set against entry of MERS-CoV
  • Japan backs PH in case before UN
  • Las Vegas union starts pickets over wages, benefits
  • Fil-Am Daly City councilor has eye on Superior Court seat
  • Marketplace