Montecillo hopes agreement will compel tourism establishments to send reports-A A +A
Sunday, July 15, 2012
DUE to late submissions from small accommodation establishments, the Department of Tourism hopes the support of the local government units will compel proprietors to regularly submit data to their department.
DOT 7 Director Rowena Montecillo said the compliance by some establishments is wanting, which resulted in the negative tourism figures posted by the National Economic Development Authority (Neda) 7.
In Neda 7’s first quarter economic situation report, tourism arrivals in Bohol dropped 18 percent, to the DOT’s surprise.
Montecillo admitted that they have trouble asking establishments to submit their data regularly, especially the smaller pension houses and inns that lack staff members or end up having to train new ones to encode the data required.
Since the DOT cannot compel establishments to submit the data regularly, Montecillo hopes that an agreement with the League of Municipalities of the Philippines in Bohol will solve this problem. The mayors of the LMP Bohol pledged to support the DOT and course the data submission through the LGUs. They agreed to craft ordinances enjoining all establishments to collect and submit data on their guests so the DOT can have figures on the visitors coming to the country.
Montecillo noted that since it is the LGU that issues the business permits, they can assert their authority over these establishments.
Asked if the lack of technology used by some of these establishments causes them to lag in their submissions, Montecillo said this may be the case. However, she said they have provided manual forms that they can easily fill up and submit to the department office.
Montecillo said that many establishments consider taking note of the nationalities as an additional burden.
She is certain that the negative result of Bohol is a result of incomplete data, rather than an actual decline of tourist arrivals.
Bohol figures showed a decline of 18.3 percent. Montecillo admitted that Bohol is not the only province where they experienced a delay in submission of reports, saying they also noted it from smaller establishments elsewhere in the region, partcularly those located in the rural areas.
Although they also experience similar problems with Cebu establishments, Montecillo said they can prod these establishments to submit because their office is located here.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on July 16, 2012.