Cebu arrivals up; new tourist facilities to be built

07/05/2010 - CEBU CITY — Cebu’s tourism industry remains upbeat, with the Department of Tourism (DoT ) reporting a 4.43% jump in tourist arrivals in the province in the last five months of this year.

Data from the DoT shows that Cebu recorded a total of 734,531 visitors from January to May 2010, with arrivals from Korea and Japan topping the list of visitors to Cebu; Korea’s share of the Cebu foreign visitors market was 30 percent while Japan had a 21 percent share of such market.

“The growth in the number of visitors provides impetus for greater public and private sector investments in infrastructure and tourism-related facilities,” said former Tourism Secretary Ace Durano.

Tourism Senior Adviser Phineas Alburo told Manila Bulletin Monday that the growth of arrivals is a good indication that Cebu continues to be among the top tourist destinations in the country, due largely to its wide offering of tourism activities and packages.

Durano said that while Cebu has only emerged as the number two preferred tourists’ destination in the country in the last five months, the province’s tourism sector has the largest number of tourism-related employment generation in the country.

According to the DoT, Cebu has the most number of regular personnel at 11,400 persons or 24 percent while Metro Manila has the biggest count of seasonal employees at 4,931 or 10 percent of the total employment in the nine destinations.

Metro Manila emerged as the leading destination for the country with a share of 23.3 percent for 848,518 tourists staying in accommodation facilities.

Tourist volume in the country’s major destination from January to May 2010 totaled 3.65 million, or an increase of 5.37 percent over the same period in 2009.

The movement of foreign tourists in key areas expanded by 13 percent compared to the travel of domestic tourist which only posted a 2.21 percent growth.

Selected destinations in Central Philippines’ “Super Region” have a combined share of 60 percent of total available rooms, while Metro Manila and Tagaytay City account for only 37 percent and three percent, respectively.

Among the destinations in Central Philippines, Cebu accounted for 18,009 or a 46 percent share of total rooms available, followed by Boracay Island with 6,984 rooms or an 18 percent share and Palawan with 4,140 rooms, for a 10 percent share.

By the end of 2010, new resort hotel accommodation facilities totaling 80 are expected to open, increasing available rooms in selected destinations by 3,743.

Of total new accommodation facilities, Cebu will account for 61 percent or 2,291 rooms, followed by Metro Manila with 605 rooms and Palawan with 407 rooms.

By 2011 and 2012, another 3,539 and 1,142 more rooms will be available as an additional 57 new accommodation facilities will commence operations, the DoT said. These new investments are anticipated to generate employment for an additional 17,782 people in the accommodation sector. (Manila Bulletin)
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