Opening of 16th Travel Tour Expo
Senate Tourism Committee Chairman Independent Senator Richard J. Gordon will lead tomorrow, 10 am, the opening ceremonies of the 16th Travel Tour Expo sponsored by Philippine Travel Agencies Association (PTAA).
Gordon is the guest of honor and will lead the ribbon cutting during the event's opening which is expected to draw some 65,000 visitors at the SMX Convention Center, Mall of Asia Complex, Pasay City.
Stressing the need to boost the country's tourism, Gordon said key players in the tourism industry should think of ways, such as the Travel Tour Expo, to feature their products and services.
"Boosting our tourism industry is a must especially that the country should prepare to face the effects of the global crisis. We have to take advantage of the many opportunities we could gain in tourism," he said.
With the theme "Travel in Style", the Travel Tour Expo aims to draw some 65,000 visitors who are expected to purchase no less than P200 million worth of travel and travel related products from participating exhibitors.
Gordon, a former tourism secretary, authored the proposed Tourism Act of 2008, which seeks to establish "tourism enterprise zones" in strategic areas in the country aimed at enticing foreign investors and tourists to visit places rich with history and culture.
The bill, now being ironed out in a Senate-House bicameral conference committee, also proposes to reorganize the Department of Tourism (DOT) and its attached agencies in order to make it better equipped to undertake a consistent and more effective tourism development and promotions plan.
Gordon introduced "Wow Philippines!" which lured foreign and local tourists, generated jobs, and increased revenues at a time when the country was faced with problems, such as kidnappings and the severe acute respiratory syndrome disease.
The Philippines, through Gordon's brainchild, "Wow Philippines!" program, has generated more jobs from 668,000 jobs in 2001 to 693,000 to 749,000 2002 and 2003, respectively.