Caraga industry players adopt strategies for tourism development

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Tuesday, December 31, 2013

BUTUAN CITY – Caraga’s tourism industry is targeting an increased contribution to the regional economy of some P3.91 billion more and 48,522 new jobs by 2016.

To meet these goals, industry players are adopting three main strategies as outlined in the National Tourism Development Plan 2011-2016, namely, 1) improving market access and connectivity; 2) developing and marketing competitive tourist destinations and products; and 3) Strengthening tourism institutional government and human resource capacities.

The 2016 targets are made after due consideration of 2012 base figures such as the estimated P1.16 billion gross value added (GVA) in 2012 and about 74,465 jobs as of the same year. Estimates were based on the number of tourists, revenues generated from each tourist, the input level standard for the gross value added or economic contribution figures, and the jobs created per tourist standard used by local government units.

The move was made during the Learning Session on Green Tourism cum Roadmapping Workshop recently.

The activity was attended by tourism stakeholders both private and government and supported by GIZ-Coseram through its partnership with the Department of Trade and Industry - Caraga in the Industry Cluster Assistance for Regional Economic Development (I-CARE) project.

In improving market access and connectivity, Caraga will embark on improving the capacities of airports in the cities of Butuan and Surigao and in Siargao Island.

The industry will also work for the regularization of flights in Bislig City and Tandag City.

Another task will be to make Caraga more accessible from the Luzon and the Visayas Islands via sea travel through fast craft transport and improving on-arrival tourist accommodation facilities and amenities from the ports of Nasipit, Agusan del Norte and Surigao City to tourist destinations.

For easier access from other places within Mindanao, the industry will work to speed up implementation of the projects under the DPWH-DOT road improvement development.

In terms of developing and marketing competitive destinations and products, the region will focus on designing and setting up or upgrading the tourism service infrastructure which include the transport network, communication, and other tourist servicing facilities – in the identified tourism development areas (TDAs).

Caraga’s TDAs are Siargao, Dinagat, Surigao City-Lake Mainit, Butuan City- Cabadbaran City, Agusan Marsh, and San Agustin-Hinatuan-Bislig.

To strengthen institutional governance and human resource capabilities, priority tasks include skills capability building, improving labor relations, professional tourism training and education, as well as the improvement of governance for tourism development at the LGU level. (PIA-13)

Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on December 31, 2013.


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