Tourism Sector Will Get Bulk of Infrastructure Budget for 2012

Article excerpt

MANILA, Philippines - The national government has lined up several programs and projects to make the Philippines one of the most vibrant tourism destinations in the world and hit its target of ushering in 4.6 million tourists this year. Budget and Management Secretary Florencio B. Abad said that much of the P182.2 billion government infrastructure program for 2012 will be used to build airports, roads and bridges that are instrumental in attracting tourists to visit the various attractions in the country. "The Aquino administration has envisioned a sustainable and well-designed tourism program for the country. A robust tourism sector can fuel up the economy so we can provide more jobs in local communities, as well as raise our national profile as a premier tourist destination," Abad said. "Our ultimate target is to attract 10 million visitors by the end of the president's term. Department of Tourism Secretary Ramon R. Jimenez shares this vision, and he has confirmed that the target is at once feasible and attainable," he added. Specific infrastructure projects for the development and construction of tourism facilities and include the P8.1-billion budget of the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) for the construction of access roads to airports and to roll-on/roll-off (RORO) ports leading to various tourist destinations. …