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20 January 2010

Philippines: Tourism sector expects windfall from MICE promotions

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Philippine tourism sector sees a $3-billion windfall from the continued surge of the global market for meetings, incentive travel, conventions and exhibitions (MICE),the Manila Bulletin reported.

Tourism Secretary Ace Durano said that while this amount ($3 billion) represents a mere one percent of the $300-billion MICE market worldwide, it is big enough to boost the country’s annual tourism receipts and compensate for any slump in the other industry sectors or market segments.

Durano issued this statement as visitor arrivals from crisis-affected countries threatened to dwindle, prompting the Department of Tourism (DoT) to look for other foreign markets and sectors that could fill up the gap.

He cited the MICE market as a stable source of foreign visitors because of its resiliency and year-round vigor, making it invulnerable to price fluctuations and seasonality.

Being mostly corporate and industry driven, this market is active all year round since MICE activities make up a necessary business and social function.

“Multinational companies, for example, can hardly do away with meetings involving their numerous executives in various countries.

We can, therefore, take advantage of our country’s position as a regional headquarters of many multinational firms and serve as host to these international corporate meetings that bring in hundreds, if not thousands, of visitors from all over the world, particularly Asia Pacific,” Durano explained.

The Philippines strategic location in the heart of the Southeast Asia can also make it a preferred choice for regional corporate events, including incentive travel, conventions and exhibitions, Durano added.


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