Skills dev’t to sustain PH tourism boom

Aug. 30, 2017

CAPACITY BUILDING. About 259 trainees will undergo various training courses to improve the quality of service of the tourism stakeholders as tourism officials and business owners sign a memorandum of agreement for the Tourism Industry Skills Program Implementation in Davao region at the Marco Polo Hotel in Davao City on Wednesday, Aug. 30.(From L-R) Department of Tourism Undersecretary for Oversight Function for Legislative Matters, Office of Tourism Standards and Regulations Director Maria Rica Bueno, Regional Director Roberto Alabado III, Undersecretary for Tourism Regulation, Coordination and Resource Generation (TRCRG) Alma Rita Jimenez and representatives from Eden Mountain Resort, Inc., GUIDE Davao, and Leticia by the Sea Consortium. (Robby Joy D. Salveron/davaotoday.com)

DAVAO CITY, Philippines – The Department of Tourism (DOT) said improving the skills of human resources in the tourism sector will play a major role in keeping up with the growth of tourist arrivals each year.

DOT Undersecretary Alma Rita Jimenez said the country will have challenge in providing “high quality experience” to tourists if it fails to meet the rising demand for skilled manpower.

“We keep on losing our people and we have to keep on hiring new ones. There are many people but are not skilled and that has a very bad effect on tourism experience because we’re stuck on learning curb,” Jimenez said.

Jimenez heads the agency’s Tourism Regulation, Coordination, and Resource Generation unit.

To address the concerns on human resource, she said the industry needs to reach out and empower employees of the tourism stakeholders and businesses.

“This is actually the time that we identify the skills that are lacking in the industry and the time to acquire the competencies and skills to training programs that will try and narrow the gap between what is required and what is available at this time,” Jimenez said.

At least 5.8 million or 12.8 percent out of the employed population belonged to the tourism sector in 2016, data from the Philippine Statistics Authority revealed, a 5.1 percent increase compared from 5 million in 2015.

On Wednesday, August 30, DOT authorities along with three tourism stakeholders in Davao region signed a memorandum of agreement (MOA) to formally start the implementation of DOT’s Tourism Industry Skills Program (TSIP).

The program aims to empower employees by conducting various human capacity building trainings for the industry enterprises nationwide.

Davao region has about of 250 trainees from Leticia by the Sea Consortium, Eden Mountain Resort, Inc. and Guide Union for Inbound and Eco-tours destination (GUIDE) Davao for the first round of training.

The government has allocated a total of P100 million for the implementation of TSIP for this year. Some 30,000 to 40,000 employees will be trained in various fields such as basic first aid and life support training, beach resort operations, open water diving course, system repair and maintenance, foreign language course, among others. (davaotoday.com)

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