MANILA — Tourism Secretary Christina Garcia Frasco on Monday said she will hold a “listening tour” across the country to discuss rehabilitation efforts for the tourism industry greatly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Frasco made the announcement during the first flag-raising ceremony in her new post at the Department of Tourism (DOT) Central Office in Makati.
According to Frasco, she will meet with regional officials and stakeholders to be “front and center of the prevailing issues that need to be addressed, andcraft solutions that will ensure the full rehabilitation and recovery of the tourism industry.”
“Moving forward, we foresee a Department of Tourism that is not only focused on the crafting of national policy but, more importantly, to be in touch with the realities on the ground, to give attention to sites, peoples, products that have not necessarily been given equal opportunity to be developed, to reach out to all regional offices, all of our partners in the local government units in the 81 provinces, over 140 cities, and over 1,400 municipalities across the Philippines, to extend to them the hand of collaboration from the Department of Tourism, and to send across the message that we are here to help the industry arise and recover,” Frasco said.
The former Liloan, Cebu mayor said that she will also be working the Public Works and Highways and the Transportation departments to provide better access to tourist sites in the country.
“President Bongbong Marcos has made his directive very clear that he fully intends for the Department of Tourism to become one of the major economic pillars for the Philippines. And so, the challenge for us is very clear," she said.
"We must not only continue to do the work that we have been doing, but we must exert extra effort to give everything that we can within what is humanly possible, to ensure that our Department becomes one of the major economic contributors in the Marcos administration, to the end that we help our brothers and sisters arise and recover from the challenges of the past few years," Frasco added.
A scion of the Garcia political family in Cebu, Frasco is a daugther of Governor Gwendolyn Garcia.
She had been reelected for another term as mayor of Liloan town in Cebu when she was appointed by President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. in her current post.