• BOI approves tourism projects worth P1.1B


    The Board of Investments (BOI) has approved three tourism projects with a combined worth of P1.13 billion, the agency said on Tueday.

    In a statement, BOI said UC-1 Corp. got the nod to operate the P267-million, 9-hectare Seven Seas Waterpark Resort in Misamis Oriental province. It started commercial operations last month.

    The resort can accommodate up to 2,000 guests on any peak day, and targets to attract up to 280,000 tourists annually.

    Also approved is Ayala Land Hotels and Resorts Corp.’ Seda Capitol Central, to be established in Bacolod City, Negros Occidental province. The P661.9-million project is an eight-story hotel that will rise near the Bacolod-Silay International Airport.

    Seda Capitol Central aims to be the preferred hotel in Bacolod for discerning travelers accustomed to international standards of product and service. It offers 154 guest rooms and suites, Seda’s signature all-day dining restaurant, function and meeting rooms for up to 300 people, an e-lounge, gym and roof deck bar.
    Its commercial operations will begin in January 2018.

    The last is 888 Subic Inc.’s P197-million beachfront Central Park Reef Resort in Olongapo City, Zambales province. A six-story hotel with 110 guest rooms, Central Park Reef Resort is scheduled to open in June 2018.

    “The recent launching of the tourism roadmaps under the Hotel and Meetings, Incentives, Conventions and Exhibitions (MICE) [category]shows we remain committed in collaborating with industry stakeholders to boost tourism in the country. That is why we will pursue a proactive and targeted approach to address the challenges of tourism in partnership with relevant associations, academe and other government agencies,” Trade Undersecretary and BOI Managing Head Ceferino Rodolfo said.

    “We can build on the competitiveness of this industry and compete with the rest of our [Southeast Asian] neighbors,” he added.

    Figures from the Department of Tourism (DOT) show that 4.4 million foreign tourists arrived in the country from January to August this year.

    The department projects to surpass its target of 6.5 million tourism arrivals this year.

    Tourism-related industries chalked up 8.6 percent of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) in 2016, according to figures released by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA).

    It contributed P1.245 trillion last year, up by 13.7 percent from 2015’s P1.09 trillion.

    Aggregate employment in tourism was estimated at 5.2 million in 2016, a 12.8-percent share of the national employment figure.


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