MANILA – The Philippines and Montenegro have expressed their interest in forging a partnership to boost their tourism sector, Malacañang said Friday.
On Thursday, Montenegrin Prime Minister Dritan Abazović paid a courtesy call to Marcos at the Music Room of Malacañan Palace in Manila.
Marcos told Abazović during their meeting that the potential two-way exchange in tourism practices between the Philippines and Montenegro could strengthen ties and yield economic benefits for both nations.
He also stressed the importance of tourism to the Philippines and the possibility for the two nations to adopt their successful strategies in developing the industry.
“Tourism has also become very important for the Philippines and we see it as an important part of the transformation of the economy because during the pandemic, it was zero. So, now we have to build back,” Marcos said, as quoted by the Presidential Communications Office in a news release.
Marcos also expressed optimism about the Philippines' potential to rebound after the pandemic.
Abazović commended Marcos for his effort to attract more tourists and investors to the Philippines.
“So, I want to congratulate you and I am more than sure that you will play a very, very important role in the context of traveling and inviting people to visit you,” he said.
Abazović is in the Philippines to witness the FIBA match between Montenegro and the United States on Friday afternoon.
Present during Abazović’s meeting with Marcos were Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) Secretary Enrique Manalo, Presidential Adviser on Foreign Affairs and Chief of Presidential Protocol Secretary Adelio Angelito Cruz, Honorary Consul of Montenegro in the Philippines Maria Vanessa Pastor-Ledesma and other officials from the DFA Office of European Affairs.
The diplomatic relations between the Philippines and Montenegro were established on Sept. 26, 2009.
The Honorary Consulate of Montenegro in Manila was officially opened on Dec. 12, 2018. (PNA)