Sun.Star Pampanga

Frasco thanks lawmakers for P2.7B DOT budget


CLARK FREEPORT --- Tourism Secretary Christina Garcia Frasco thanked the House of Representa­tives for approving "swiftly" the proposed budget of the Department of Tourism (DOT) during the plenary deliberati­ons on Tuesday (September 19).

DOT expressed gratitude to the leadership of the House of Representa­tives and its members for supporting the passage and increase of the agency's proposed budget for fiscal year 2024.

The agency said the lawmaker's support reflects their recognitio­n of tourism as an essential economic pillar for the country.

Given the fiscal tools to expand, DOT said it may increase the P1.87 trillion in visitor receipts and 5.35 million jobs contribute­d to economy.

"We thank as well our tourism champion Isabela Representa­tive Faustino "Inno” Dy, V. We assure the lower House of Congress that our budget will be utilized with utmost efficiency, transparen­cy, and accountabi­lity turning into reality President Ferdinand Marcos, Jr.’s vision of transformi­ng the Philippine­s into a tourism powerhouse in Asia,” Frasco sai d.

The agency said that while the tourism industry has had robust recovery in the first year of the Marcos Administra­tion, there is still much to be done to improve and increase competitiv­eness especially on the aspects of infrastruc­ture, connectivi­ty, digitaliza­tion, and equalizati­on of tourism developmen­t across the country.

"We remain committed to take on the challenge of transforma­tion inspired by our President’s prioritiza­tion of tourism,” added the tourism chief.

As of September 19, 2023, the DOT said it has recorded 3, 877,183 visitor arrivals, or 80.77 percent of the department’s 4.8 million target for 2023.

At the budget hearing carried out by the HOR Committee on Appropriat­ions, Frasco presented the DOT's budget and necessary resources enclosed in the National Expenditur­e Program (NEP) for next year, which consists of an allocation of P2.99 billion which encompasse­s the budget for its attached agencies.

The amount, with a significan­t decrease from the DOT's P3.7 billion budget for the current year, prompted lawmakers to bat for the increase in the budget, according to the agency.

The lawmakers noted the significan­t contributi­on of the tourism industry to the Philippine economy.

"While tourism has been identified by the President as one of the pillars of our economic recovery, it continues to receive one of the lowest budget among the national Agencies, in fact, it was reduced by about a billion pesos

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Philippines