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DOT 49th Anniversary speech of the Tourism Secretary

DOT 49th Anniversary speech of the Tourism Secretary

11 MAY 2022

Good morning to the DOT Family,

On this special occasion of the Department of Tourism’s 49th anniversary, we honor the people who helped make the department what it is today. It is an institution guided by good governance, fueled by the passion to promote the Philippines, and sustained by the vision to bring inclusive growth to communities around the country. I am deeply grateful for the commitment you have shown over the course of this administration.

It has been the most challenging few years for a sector that was directly and significantly impacted by the pandemic, but all of you helped bring its recovery—even when you were required to stay home and work.

In just a short span of time, we are now one of the few agencies to receive the highest COA rating for two years in a row. May you continue to do everything with integrity and transparency, in accordance with the laws, rules, and regulations, and continue receiving this honor.

The cleaning up and rehabilitation of Boracay and other prime tourist destinations led to a new vision for tourism that is anchored on conservation and sustainability. May you find more ways to make tourism reduce its impact on the environment and leave it better for future generations.

We celebrated the end of 2019 triumphantly with a record-breaking number of tourist arrivals, validation of the department’s decade of efforts to promote the Philippines as a fun place to travel to; only to be blindsided by a novel virus that would change the way we live and work, perhaps forever.

2020 was the year that tested our resolve to serve the industry’s stakeholders and steer a sinking ship to safety. It was a year of profound reflection on what our sector has become, but we emerged from it with a stronger plan for what it should be.

May you always carry with you the lessons learned making it through the pandemic, most especially the healing spirit of bayanihan, which has brought out the best in the Filipino people throughout these times.

Our last year has been a slow and bumpy ride towards the light at the end of the tunnel. But with the department’s robust vaccination program and comprehensive guidelines for health and safety, we emerged from the darkness, into a new normal where tourism can resume in confidence. This was punctuated by the highly successful WTTC global summit last April, where we showed the world our capabilities to host major events with professionalism, talent, and the warmth we are so loved for. May you remember this victorious moment as proof that the Filipino people are indeed the country’s greatest asset.

Now that we have gathered some momentum again, I wish the department another decade of breakthroughs in your tourism journey. May you reach even greater heights in making the Philippine tourism industry more sustainable, inclusive, and resilient. Congratulations to the officials and the employees of the DOT on this very happy anniversary.

Thank you and Mabuhay!

Published:May 11, 2022

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