Clark Freeport continues to be one of the most preferred destinations in the country for hosting various events, as it chalked up a huge number of visitors, tourists and other guests last year.
A report by Tourism and Promotions Division of Clark Development Corp. showed that a total of 210 various events took place here last year, generating 339,592 tourists and guests who trooped to the Freeport.
The events were mostly sports-related activities―marathons, duathlons, triathlons, ball games such as football, softball, and baseball, among others.
As reflected in the same report, the number of events in 2019 surpassed the 2018 record of 200 events in the Freeport. The opening of the Mangan Tamu Food Street here brought in 48,700 tourists and guests out of the overall generated volume of tourists last year.
Meanwhile, the recorded figure does not yet include those who visited the Freeport during the staging of the 30th Southeast Asian Games here.
Some of the areas in the Freeport became the official venues of the various games such as Rugby 7s and Archery at the Clark Parade Grounds.
Baseball at The Villages, Dancesport at Royce Hotel and Casino, Lawn bowl at the Friendship Gate, and Petanque at the open area along M.A. Roxas Highway. The New Clark City was also the main hub for the Athletics and Aquatics competitions.
The state-owned firm has firmed up plans for the Freeport as a major Sports Tourism Destination by staging more tourism and sports-related activities this year.
CDC President and CEO Noel F. Manankil recognized the significant contributions of the tourism sector in boosting the economy of the Freeport. He mentioned that 38 percent of the rent income from 2015 to 2018 came from tourism-related ventures here.
Manankil also said the tourism industry here is seen to boost the developments in the Freeport for the next five years.
CDC projected that the tourism sector will yield the 54-percent of the rent income for the year 2020 to 2024 as the state-owned firm underscored the potential of the tourism industry in creating more opportunities that complement the various infrastructure developments in the Freeport.
CDC has geared Clark to be a premier center for Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, and Exhibits (MICE). Currently, there are a total of 2,900 hotel rooms here supplemented by 111 dining facilities, 85 conventions halls, and 27 facilities for wellness, golf, and other sports-related activities.