DOT promotes ESL as key PH tourism product

January 26, 2022, 8:45 am

MANILA – The Department of Tourism (DOT) is strengthening its promotion of the country through the 2nd Hybrid Philippine Education Tourism Conference (PETC) that will be held in Clark, Pampanga on January 26-27.

Led by the DOT through its Office of Product and Market Development, the two-day conference aims to further develop English as a Second Language (ESL), considered as the country’s key education tourism product being promoted by the office since 2013.

“Among the biggest challenges we face today is how to effectively provide students with their learning requirements. Because of the pandemic, teachers, students, and schools had to shift quickly to digital forms of instruction," Tourism Secretary Berna Romulo-Puyat, who is set to open the event on January 26, said in a news release issued on Tuesday.

"Despite this difficult educational environment, we have to continue equipping our students with the necessary skills to succeed in an unpredictable world, which requires innovation and a strong support network. As such, the Department of Tourism will continue to conduct activities that will further the growth of the education tourism industry and assist our stakeholders.”

Before the pandemic, the Philippines was considered the world’s fifth-largest ESL provider, Puyat said.

To enhance the country’s position, not only as an ESL hub but also as a multi-faceted education tourism destination, the PETC will showcase to both local and foreign students short-term online and offline education tourism programs that are being offered by institutions in the Philippines in the new normal.

Local and foreign education tourism authorities will share their expertise in marketing strategies to help institutions make their offerings more appealing to foreign students.

Invited experts will tackle such topics as international mobility, the latest education requirements for foreign students, and best practices of neighboring countries that local institutions can adopt to mitigate the impacts of the pandemic.

Other major components of the PETC are the virtual business-to-business and business-to-consumer networking activities scheduled on January 28, which aim to provide opportunities for stakeholders and key players to renew or forge new partnerships and exchange ideas and education trends.

The first-ever PETC was first organized by the DOT in Lapu-Lapu City, Cebu in July 2019. The event was attended by more than 350 participants from ESL schools, colleges, universities, associations, and government agencies. (PR)