News and Updates
Frasco to speak at UNWTO Global Tourism Economy Forum
21 September 2023
Director, Office of Public Affairs and Advocacy
Philippine Department of Tourism (PDOT) Secretary Christina Garcia Frasco has been invited to speak at panel discussions at the prestigious United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) Global Tourism Economy Forum (GTEF) slated on Friday (Sept. 22) in the Macao Special Administrative Region (SAR).
The Philippine tourism chief will be joining tourism ministers from across the globe including His Excellency (HE) Hu Heping of China, HE Daniela Garnero Santanche of Italy, HE Celso Sabino De Oliveira of Brazil, and HE Priantha Fernando of Sri Lanka, among others.
Also expected to attend the meeting of global tourism leaders are UNWTO Secretary-General Zurab Pololikashvili, World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) President and CEO Julia Simpson, and GTEF Secretary Pansy Ho. Other panelists include Natalia Bayona, Executive Director of the UNWTO, and Harry Hwang, Director of the UNWTO Regional Department for Asia and the Pacific.
According to its website, the Global Tourism Economy Forum is a leading international exchange platform designed to promote the sustainable development of the global tourism sector. It is hosted by the Secretariat of Economy and Finance of the Government of Macao SAR (GSEF), and in collaboration with the UNWTO, the GTEF is co-organized by the Macao Government Tourism Office (MGTO) and the China Chamber of Tourism (CCT) and coordinated by the Global Tourism Economy Research Centre (GTERC).
Secretary Frasco will be speaking as a panelist for the session titled “Sustainability in Focus: Navigating the Future of Tourism in Asia” and is expected to tackle the Philippines’ key strategies to simultaneously pursue sustainability objectives while ensuring the growth of the local tourism industry.
These strategies would include the Philippines’ profile as one of the megadiverse regions in the world, incorporation of multi-dimensional tourism in its product development, expansion of tourism development to emerging destinations, as well as the inclusion of Batanes Islands to the highly regarded UNWTO International Network of Sustainable Tourism Observatories (INSTO).
“I am honored to bring the Philippines’ sustainable tourism plans, initiatives, and successes to the global stage to promote awareness of the incredible beauty and biodiversity of our country, and the work to sustain its development, conservation, and promotion to ensure tourism’s continued contribution to our country’s economy,” Secretary Frasco said.
“This invitation is also timely as the Philippines has recently been elected as Vice President of the 25th General Assembly of the United Nations World Tourism Organization and Chair of the Commission for East Asia and the Pacific. Thus, this would also be an opportunity to highlight the Philippines’ positive tourism rebound in Asia Pacific,” the tourism chief added.
To recall, Secretary Frasco, the youngest member of the cabinet of President Ferdinand R. Marcos, Jr., and a former local chief executive, has introduced innovative programs aimed at promoting sustainability and expanding opportunities for tourism development in the countryside. Among her first directives is to include sustainability indicators in the National Accommodation Standards (NAS).
On her request, the DOT has also set an ambitious goal of training 100,000 tourism frontliners on the Filipino Brand of Service Excellence with modules that include sustainability principles. The DOT has also launched the Philippine Experience Program to diversify the country’s tourism offerings beyond its natural assets through heritage, culture, and arts caravans across regions.
Published:September 21, 2023