Safe tourist destination

February 13, 2020

VARIOUS quarters acknowledge that like the government’s highly-successful overseas employment program, the tourist industry remains a major pillar of the Philippine economy.

This, despite the COVID-19 epidemic, which has killed more than 1,100 people in Mainland China. Confirmed cases now number an estimated 45,100 in more than two dozen countries.

COVID-19 is the new name of the 2019 novel Coronavirus. “Co” stands for “corona,” “vi” for “virus” and “d” for disease, while “19” is for the year, as the outbreak was first identified on Dec. 31.

The Department of Tourism (DoT) and the Tourism Congress of the Philippines (TCP) assured foreign and local tourists that the country remains a safe destination for travel.

Note that in these challenging times, the tourism sector spanning airlines, hotels and tour operators have banded together for the continued growth of the dollar-oriented industry.

“It is because of this support…that we reiterate that the Philippines remains a diverse and, most importantly, safe destination for international and domestic travelers alike,” said DoT.

The tourism department was also quick to assure the public that all preventive and precautionary measures are being put in place by the government to contain the spread of “COVID-19.”

In the meantime, other sectors of society – in the interest of a healthy population – ought to remind everybody to always maintain proper hygiene if we are to prevent the spread of “COVID-19.”

As the DoT said, let’s wash our hands regularly, wear a surgical mask when going to crowded places if we have a cough or a cold, and stay indoors or seek medical help if we have a fever.

Aside from the DoT and the TCP, other concerned agencies have a responsibility to ensure the health, safety and welfare of the more than 100 million Filipinos during emergencies.