Marcos: Going ‘green’ good for PH tourism | Inquirer News

Marcos: Going ‘green’ good for PH tourism

Marcos: Going ‘green’good for PH tourism

CULTURE UP CLOSE President Marcos checks a booth featuring Mindanao culture and products during an international tourism gathering in Lapu-Lapu City, Cebu, on Friday.—MARIANNE BERMUDEZ

LAPU-LAPU CITY — The country’s tourism industry should “go green” in tourism products and services to address challenges like climate change, resource preservation, and long-term sustainability.

President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. made this call on Friday as he also stressed the importance of investing in the education, training, and skills upgrading of tourism workers.


In a speech at the Sheraton Cebu Mactan Resort here, the President said sustainable practices should be adopted while further developing the tourism industry.


“We need to adopt sustainability in our society and economy, and certainly in the sector of tourism. We must go green in the transformation of our tourism products and services as a solution to address climate change, resource preservation, and long-term industry sustainability,” Marcos said.

“As a matter of fact, I would take that even a step further and if we are to talk about tourism, I am of the belief that the greener you are, the better the tourism experience will be,” he added.

READ: PH tourism slowest to recover in Asia-Pacific region

The President made the remarks at the joint meeting of the United Nations Tourism Commission for East Asia and the Pacific and the UN Tourism Commission for South Asia held in Cebu on Friday.

It was a meeting of delegates from the World Tourism Organization’s member states, affiliate members, and various groups to discuss the UN Tourism Programme for 2024 to 2025 and promote sustainable gastronomy tourism while preserving local traditions and natural resources.

Raising standards

In his speech during the opening ceremony, Marcos also stressed the importance of education in the tourism industry, adding that education “is always going to make any industry better.”


“Certainly, tourism is no different. We need to raise the standards and practices in this crucial sector by investing in education, training, and skills upgrading of all the personnel who are working in this industry,” the President said.

He said the country would require experts and professionals from different fields to help make tourism “a meaningful and educational, and impactful experience not only for tourists but also for our stakeholders.”

“For what good will any tourism effort be if it ends up destroying the local culture and ecology,” Marcos added.

He also reassured industry players that the government would continue to work with the private sector in implementing reforms that would make tourists “visit, stay, spend and return” to the Philippines.

These include easing visa access, improving water sanitation and healthcare facilities in major tourist destinations, and better connectivity hubs such as airports.

Economic contribution

“By adopting these practices, we create a tourism industry that not only creates responsible visitors but also uplifts the lives of those who are part of that activity,” the President said, adding that tourism has a vital role in economies and societies.

He cited the tourism industry’s contribution to the 2023 gross domestic product, which hit 8.6 percent or P2.09 trillion ($35 billion).

“This marks the highest record of growth in gross value added in tourism since the year 2000. This is an impressive increase of 48 percent compared to the previous year’s numbers,” he said.

READ: PH tourism set for full recovery in 2025, says BMI

Marcos also noted that in 2023, the Philippines welcomed 5.45 million foreign tourists, exceeding the year’s target of 4.8 million foreign visitors.

For January to March 2024, international tourist arrivals were recorded at 2.9 million, which Marcos said was proof of the “robust recovery and continued appeal of our country as a top travel destination.”

“But going beyond monetary values and numbers, these figures also mean millions of lives being changed for the better. That’s why I hope that our efforts here will lead to even better practices and more tourism arrivals not just for our country but for the entire world,” he added.

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After the event in Lapu-Lapu City, the President went to Tagbilaran City in Bohol where he turned over P100 million to the provincial governments of Bohol and Cebu to be given as assistance to El Niño-hit farmers and fishermen.

TAGS: climate change, environment, green, Tourism, Tourist

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