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Province of South Cotabato

At least 100, 000 tourists visit South Cotabato in January, tourism report confirms

Koronadal City—No virus could hamper the increasing number of tourist arrivals in South Cotabato despite the deadly 2019 coronavirus (COVID-19), the Tourist Arrival Summary Report recorded.

Anna Liza Mondejar, Tourism Officer 1, said that as of January, more than 100, 000 tourists have already visited South Cotabato, including data from the City of Koronadal.

COVID 19 erupted last January this year, prompting the Philippine Government to issue a travel ban to countries like Taiwan, Hongkong, and China.

“We are hoping that this will continue,” Mondejar said.

On the other hand, at least one million local and foreign day tourists visited the province in 2019 while more than 600, 000 of this number stayed overnight in South Cotabato.

Richie Matunding, Tourism Data Encoder, said at least a million locals championed tourist arrivals in the province. Foreign arrivals, however, declined by 1. 63 percent compared in 2018.

“In the last six years, there are 20, 000 foreigners who stayed overnight in South Cotabato,” Matunding said.

The report said that there is a 16.68 percent increase in same-day tourist arrivals in 2019 compared to the 2018 report.

“Out of the 44 attraction or destination facilities, 33 submitted their reports,” Matunding said.

Among the areas of South Cotabato, the City of Koronadal, Lake Sebu, and Tupi topped the list of the most visited towns in the province based on accommodation in the last five years.

Lake Sebu is the highest contributor of data.

Meanwhile, the regional office of the Department of Health reported 71 Persons Under Monitoring (PUMs), but 62 turned out negative after completing the 14-day home quarantine.

The Regional Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit (RESU) began the COVID-19 watch in the region last January 29.

In South Cotabato, 5 persons are under monitoring.

There is no drastic changes in terms of income in tourist attraction facilities like the famous Seven Falls Zip Line in Lake Sebu, South Cotabato Economic Enterprise Management Officer-in-Charge Marlyn Almaden confirmed in an interview during the weekly Kapihan sa Kapitolyo.

“Based on the day-to-day income since the alarm of COVID 19 started, there is only a minimal changes although most of our foreign tourists are composed of Koreans and Chinese,” Almaden said.

Almaden told local press that last January, the income of zip line was affected because of the three-day closure due to annual facility maintenance.

“Luckily we did not observed a drastic drop in our economic activities especially among our tourist facilities,” Almaden added.

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