Lawyer Helen J. Catalbas, regional director of the Department of Tourism (DOT-6), said they will step up their efforts to further improve the tourism industry of Western Visayas.
“The region should not be complacent with its present status but should exert more effort to become a top destination in the ASEAN level,” she stressed.
According to Catalbas, “the DOT-6 will create the atmosphere and bring in investments but it will be up to the local government units to implement and maintain these endeavors.
“We will continue to elevate and develop our tourism industry by going down to the grassroots-level through Bottom-Up Budgeting Process. We will train, educate and enhance the skills and amenities of the community so everyone will benefit,” she added.
Catalbas also expects that more national and international Meetings, Incentives, Conventions and Exhibitions (MICE) will be held in the region after the successful hosting of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) meetings in Boracay Island and the cities of Iloilo and Bacolod.
DOT-6 TARGETS 4.6 MILLION TOURISTS
The region’s tourism department targets 4.6 million tourist arrivals this 2016.
It is higher by eight percent compared to last year’s target of 4.2 million.
Catalbas said that the figure still includes the province of Negros Occidental and the highly urbanized city of Bacolod.
“Prospects are bright for Western Visayas tourism and we are moving to maintain if not accelerate the momentum that the tourism industry here is experiencing right now,” she said. (with a report from PIA) IMT