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DoT unveils marketing strategy for Metro
Source: Manila Bulletin
Author: By Rachel C. Barawid
Date: 2005-04-01
In a bid to lure back travelers who’ve lost interest in conducting business in the metropolis, Tourism Secretary Joseph Ace Durano is coming up with a campaign that will promote Metro Manila as Convention City or a major destination for international meetings, incentives, conventions, and exhibitions (MICE).

Speaking before officials and members of the Philippine Association of Convention/Exhibition Organizers and Suppliers (PACEOS) during its recent general membership meeting, Durano said for many years, Metro Manila has been considered by foreign visitors as a mere jump-off point to other tourist destinations in the country.

He reported that an increasing number of tourists are now bypassing Metro Manila and flying directly to places with international airports like Laoag, Subic, Clark, Cebu, Davao, and General Santos City. In the next six years, additional international airports will be put up in Panglao Island, Iloilo City, Bacolod City, and Coron in Palawan, making competition more stiff for Metro Manila.

"We can no longer be complacent with its status as a jump-off point. It is time we change this mindset and develop Metro Manila as a destination in itself. Otherwise, we may soon lose tourist traffic in this region," he cautioned.

Durano said he will work closely with the Philippine Convention and Visitors Corporation (PCVC), the marketing arm of the Department of Tourism (DoT), and the private sector in creating this new image for Metro Manila.

"As the year progresses, we will roll out promotions targeted at the international MICE market. Hopefully, the renovation of the Philippine International Convention Center and the opening of the Ninoy Aquino International AirportTerminal III will help project a fresh image of the Philippines – and of Metro Manila, in particular – as an ideal MICE destination," Durano added.

At present, the DoT is already deep into its international tourism drive and is actively participating in several trade fairs abroad to promote the country as a MICE destination. Among these fairs are IMEX: The Worldwide Exhibition for Incentive Travel, Meetings, and Events in Frankfurt, Germany; the Incentive Travel & Conventions Meetings Asia (IT&CMA) in Pattaya, Thailand; and the 14th Asia-Pacific Incentives & Meetings Expo (AIME) in Melbourne, Australia.

The Philippines is also playing host to several major international events this year, once again proving that it has the capability and the facilities to mount big or small events of every kind. These events include the South East Asian Games; Inter-Parliamentary Union’s 112th Assembly; the 24th International Congress of Chemotherapy, the 8th AsiaPacific Environmental and Occupational Dermatology Symposium; the Conference of the International Society of Pharmacovigilance; and the International Association of Financial Executives Institute World Congress.


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