The tourism sector in this province posted significant gains in 2023, with an almost 90 percent increase in tourist arrivals compared to the previous year.
In its latest report, the Provincial Tourism Promotions and Development Office (PTPDO) disclosed that a total of 1,527,159 tourists visited Palawan last year, which is markedly higher than the 814,621 visitors recorded in 2022.
Maribel Buñi, head of the Provincial Tourism Promotions and Development Office (PTPDO), said in a press briefing on Thursday that of the total number of visitors, 873,592 were Filipinos and 653,567 were foreign travelers.
Palawan’s growing stature as a global tourist destination has correspondingly boosted the sector’s income, with earnings escalating to PHP57.2 billion in 2023, a substantial increase from PHP30.5 billion in 2022, according to a PTPDO survey.
“In general, 2023 was a productive year for the province’s tourism industry. But this does not mean that those in the industry have to be complacent,” she said.
El Nido led the municipalities in Palawan with the highest number of tourists, followed closely by Coron.
San Vicente ranked third in attracting visitors, with Brooke’s Point and Linapacan coming in fourth and fifth, respectively, Buñi said.
The top five foreign markets for the province’s tourism industry were the United States, France, Germany, the United Kingdom, and Spain.
Tourism is a key focus for the provincial government under the leadership of Governor Dennis Socrates, and is considered as a major driver of economic growth, she noted.
Buñi pointed out that while 2023 would be recorded as a significant success for the tourism sector, local stakeholders still need to enhance and expand their offerings, implement government policies effectively, and employ more impactful marketing strategies.
“Continuous product development, policy implementation, promotions, and marketing must be made to ensure not just touristic experience for travelers but also return visits,” she said. (PNA)