Slated on Sept. 3, 2015 at the SMX Convention Center, Mall of Asia , Pasay City, the 3rd Philippine Tourism Forum, with the theme THE BUSINESS OF TOURISM: ASEAN AND BEYOND, promises to provide a venue for learning from the experts, sharing insights with industry leaders and open discussion to accelerate the industry preparation for the ASEAN ECONOMIC COMMUNITY by the end of 2015.

The event is organized by the Philippine Tour Operators’ Association (PHILTOA) and also serves as a pre-event learning activity to set the tone for its Philippine Travel Mart 2015, the biggest annual travel trade exhibition in the promotion and marketing of domestic and inbound tourism, happening on Sept. 4-6 also at SMX. PHILTOA is joined and supported by prestigious organizations namely the Management Association of the Philippines (MAP), the ASEAN Business Advisory Council Philippines (ABAC Phils.), PricewaterhouseCoopers Philippines (PWC) and the Global Leadership Initiatives for Sustainable Tourism (GLIST). This is supported by the Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority as part of its initiative to provide business intelligence in the tourism industry and encourage investors for the sector.

For the first time, five secretaries of tourism will gather together to share their thoughts and insights on the state of the industry and what more should be done to grow the tourism business. All five of the secretaries would account for more than two decades of combined experience and their wisdom culled from their experiences, past and present, will be valuable in understanding the journey of the tourism industry.

Five DOT Secretaries Gather In Philippine Tourism Forum

Five DOT Secretaries Gather In Philippine Tourism Forum

DOT Secretary Ramon Jimenez will keynote the forum and he is expected to provide a snapshot on the gains of tourism for the past four years and what directions should be pursued to continue building the momentum. The four other former secretaries of tourism who will be in the forum are Rep. Joseph ‘Ace’ Durano, former secretary and now Phil. Red Cross Chair Richard ‘Dick’ Gordon, former secretary (DILG and DOT) Rafael Alunan III and former secretary and now President of Int’l School of Sustainable Tourism Mina Gabor. They will discuss relevant issues that impact on tourism such as the engagement of local governments, national security and safety concerns, disaster management and sustainable communities.

Screen Shot 2015-08-26 at 2.12.18 PMBy December 2015, the ten countries of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) will come together to form the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC). 2015 is the year the Philippines is hosting the APEC meet. The Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) is a regional economic forum where its 21 member-countries aim to create greater prosperity for the people of the region by promoting balanced, inclusive, sustainable, innovative and secure growth and by accelerating regional economic integration. Tourism is one of the big contributors to Philippines economy, able to generate jobs and cascade the benefits to those who need it most. It is one of the top priority sectors that must be improved to be aligned with the goals of the ASEAN Economic Community.

Tourism flourishes when enabling policies are in place to open gateways for visitors,” said PHILTOA president Cesar Cruz. “Policy issues, the big picture, the private sector tourism agenda, the impact of national security, politics, disaster – all these are strategic inputs to enterprise tourism planning.” The forum is expected to tackle these issues to prepare for more competitive years ahead.

Joining the 5 leaders is a powerhouse cast of private sector leaders with tourism foresight like Architect Felino ‘Jun’ Palafox for urban planning, Mr. Jay Yuvallos, the Philippine representative to the ASEAN Business Advisory Council, ASEAN Tourism Association President Aileen Clemente and the managing director of Isla Lipana-PricewaterhouseCoopers Atty. Alexander Cabrera.

To register for this event, visit this page .