TOURISM Secretary Wanda Tulfo-Teo, in Beijing with President Rodrigo Duterte during a four-day visit which ended Friday night, has made a big bounce to attract Chinese investments in the Philippines
Teo made the push during a meeting with Chinese stakeholders on the eve of the Filipino delegation’s departure for home.
Besides looking to attract two million Chinese tourists per year, Teo also said she aimed to promote investment opportunities in hospitality, infrastructure, and aviation.
Teo emphasized this was the most favorable time to invest as the Philippines was enjoying the highest growth rate in international arrivals in Southeast Asia.
“We encourage you to invest in the Philippines now, as our country and China strengthen our bilateral trade and business relations,” she said.
Teo pointed out the Philippines would need over 100,000 rooms most especially in the 4- and 5-star categories as DoT aims to increase tourist arrivals to 12 million.
Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority chief operating officer, lawyer Guiller Asido discussed incentives with tourism zone investors.
“We are offering a tax holiday for six years to investors as well as tax exemption to equipment that you will bring in,” said Asido.
The Dept. of Tourism also encouraged investors to consider other destinations in the Philippines such as Samal Island in Davao, Bataan, Bohol, and Siargao.
Bai Fan, vice president of the Beijing Tourism Group (BTG), expressed intention to invest in the Philippines most particularly in Subic.
“Subic has many beautiful types of scenery and has a lot of potential to the market and it is also close to Manila, I think this is the best time to invest in the Philippines since you have good relationship with China,” said Fan.
The increase in Chinese arrivals is expected to play a major role in encouraging investors to enter the Philippines tourism sector.
Direct investments in the Philippines generated $38 million and have created 5 million jobs in 2015.