DOT on track to meet 2013 target for tourist arrivals-A A +A
Saturday, January 25, 2014
THE Department of Tourism (DOT) 7 yesterday said it has reached 98.95 percent of its target number of tourist arrivals in 2013, which it had set at 3.033 million. But that’s before the December figures were factored in.
Around 3,002,004 million tourists visited Central Visayas from January to November 2013, up by 11.82 percent from 2.684 million in 2012.
The agency needs only to confirm that at least 31,819 tourists arrived last December, to meet its target.
Domestic tourist arrivals in Central Visayas in the first 11 months of 2013 reached a record high of 1.795 million visitors, breaching the 1.682-million domestic arrival target for the year.
International tourists, on the other hand, logged 1.206 million. The DOT said it needed to confirm the arrival of at least 143,138 foreign tourists in December, to meet the annual target of 1.351 million.
“We are optimistic to hit the target. These are just partial figures and we still have one more month to account for,” said Rowena Montecillo, regional director of the DOT 7, in a phone interview.
Montecillo said the arrival figures signified a healthy tourism industry in the country, primarily driven by domestic travel. She expected arrivals from the foreign markets, though, to drop due to the twin calamities that hit the region in the last quarter of 2013.
A powerful M7.2 earthquake hit Bohol and Cebu last Oct. 15, 2013, followed less than a month later by super typhoon Yolanda.
Arrivals in Cebu grew by 8.68 percent for a total of 2.217 million from 2.040 million in 2012.
Korea contributed to the biggest arrivals with 467,696 visitors, up by 19.88 percent from figures in the same period in 2012. Arrivals from Japan and Germany, meanwhile, dropped by 2.95 percent to 176,009 and 7.90 percent to 13,670, respectively.
Taiwan recorded the fastest growth of 219.69 percent or 22,330 visitors.
The United States was third on the list of biggest arrivals for the period with 79,918 visitors, up by 4.16 percent. China came next; its arrivals went up by 6.04 percent to 28,632.
Other markets that posted significant growth were Australia (29,193); Canada (17,898); United Kingdom (16,237); and Russia (13,964).
DOT 7’s tourism target for 2014 was pegged at 3.661 million; for 2015, it is 4.433 million; and for 2016, its target will be 5.82 million.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on January 26, 2014.