NEWLY-appointed Undersecretary of the Department of Tourism (DoT) Silvino Tejada said on Tuesday that he will push through reforms to boost agritourism and ecotourism in the country while helping the department achieve its six-year tourism development plan.
Speaking in a press briefing, DOT Secretary Wanda Corazon Tulfo-Teo said she has confidence in Tejada, who has years of experience in the government as Executive Director of the Bureau of Soils and Water Management (BSWM) under the Department of Agriculture (DA), where he championed irrigation projects and conducted soil and water resource management programs as tools to alleviate poverty.
“He will handle three sub-sectors namely agritourism, ecotourism and faith-based tourism. I always believe that it is the right time that we boost agritourism as tourists want new experiences, a simple escape from the stress in Manila. They want to experience a leisurely pace by visits to working farms, ranches, and agricultural industries,” said Teo.
Meanwhile, Tejada stressed that he will give come up with a concrete plan to integrate agritourism, ecotourism, and faith-based tourism.
“I will link the three sub-sectors to be a viable foundation for the tourism industry and which will be the lead catalyst of a climate resilient, robust and vibrant tourism industry,” Tejada said.
Tejada also announced the creation of a Farm Tourism Development Board, led by the DoT and to be assisted by a Technical Working Group (TWG) from DA, Agricultural Training Institute (ATI), Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), and Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), which will formulate and set the overall direction for the implementation of programs, projects and activities for the growth of farm tourism in the country.