MANILA -- The Department of Tourism (DOT) has apologized to local and foreign tourists affected by the flight cancellations and delays at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) after a Xiamen Air passenger aircraft figured in a runway mishap on Aug. 16.

In a press statement issued Tuesday, DOT said it will extend all possible assistance it can give to the passengers inconvenienced by the incident.

"Our DOT-Airport Offices have been instructed to provide all possible assistance to those affected by this incident," the statement said.

"We will meet with airlines and airport authorities to further discuss the instances of Compensation for Delayed/Cancelled Flights and Delayed/Lost Baggage in the interest of all parties," it added.

The agency remains optimistic that the incident would not deter the continuous growth of tourist arrivals to the Philippines. "Instead, this should serve as a challenge for all tourism stakeholders to continue working together to achieve the industry’s full potential," it said.

DOT also expressed full support to the Department of Transportation's (DOTr) move for the improvement of policies, procedures and protocols to address such type of crisis and other possible aviation emergencies.

"We subscribe to clearer and broader measures that will ensure preparedness and clear-cut responsibilities of all parties concerned," it said.

Meanwhile, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) assured overseas Filipino workers affected by the cancelled and disrupted flights that all embassies and consulates abroad were instructed to provide certificates explaining the cause of the incident to their employees.

"The Department of Foreign Affairs has instructed its embassies and consulates general abroad to extend their assistance to overseas Filipino workers who were unable to arrive on time in their host country due to the recent accident at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Manila," DFA Assistant Secretary and Spokesperson Elmer Cato said on Monday.

"Foreign Service Posts will issue certifications and make representations if needed to explain to foreign employers the delay in the arrival of their Filipino employees," he added.

Hundreds of domestic and international flights were cancelled when a Xiamen Air passenger aircraft skidded off a runway at NAIA on Thursday evening. The airport's international runway went back to normal operation on Aug. 18. (PNA)