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Philippines expects to attract 8.2 million foreign tourists in 2019

The Philippines is hoping to reach its target of 8.2 million foreign tourist arrivals in 2019, one million higher than the figure in 2018.

The Philippine Department of Tourism (DOT) reported on September 6 that the number of foreign tourists to the country in the first seven months this year was around 4.85 million, a 12.4 percent increase over the same period last year.

The Republic of Korea remained the top foreign tourist market with 1,113,274 arrivals, followed by China with 1,038,409.

The US came third with 663,116 arrivals, while Japan ranked the fourth with 382,634 visitors.

The department attributed the continued upsurge to the sustained support from industry stakeholders, government, host communities, investors and foreign travel trade counterparts.

The tourism industry created 5.4 million jobs in 2018 and contributed 12.7 percent or 2.2 trillion pesos (41.96 billion USD) to the Philippines’ gross domestic product (GDP).