Jimenez: Tourist arrivals steady despite Zambo crisis

Cecilia Cabiao

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There are no trip cancellations so far, says the Tourism chief

Passengers form a long line in front of airlines check in counters at the terminal building of Manila international airport on June 16, 2008. AFP PHOTO/TED ALJIBE

MANILA, Philippines – Foreign tourist arrivals have been steady despite clashes between the military and Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) fighters in Zamboanga City, according to the Tourism secretary.

“As of this morning, there are no [booking] cancellations,” Department of Tourism chief Ramon Jimenez said on the sidelines of the 2013 Philippine Economic Briefing on Tuesday, September 17.

Jimenez said the violence in Mindanao has “no immediate implications on tourism.”

“The country’s image is much more buoyant and resilient than before. We have an image shaped not just by news, but also active promotions,” he added. 

In 2012, 4.2 million foreigners visited the country, up 9.07% from 3.9 million in 2011. The government attributed the increase to the success of the country’s tourism campaign, “It’s more fun in the Philippines!

Koreans were the Philippines’ top visitors, followed by Americans and Japanese.

From January to July this year, the country had 2.8 million visitors. Jimenez shared he is “confident we will reach our 5 million target this year.” – Rappler.com 


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