May 22, 2024

The Insider News

Direct from the source

Batanes new member of UNWTO

By Justine Rich Talusan

BATANES is the newest member of the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) International Network of Sustainable Tourism Observatories (INSTO).

Tourism Secretary Christina Garcia-Frasco hailed the inclusion of Batanes Islands, through the Batanes Tourism Hospitality Monitoring Center (BTHMC) in the UNWTO, saying this reflects the successful sustainability efforts in local destinations in the Philippines. 

The UNWTO on Tuesday night announced the inclusion of Batanes Islands in its growing International Network of Sustainable Tourism Observatories. 

The Tourism chief supported the application of Batanes Islands as an INSTO member by way of a letter to the UNWTO chief dated March 31, 2023, as a formal endorsement through the help of the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) Embassy of the Philippines in Madrid, Spain. 

Batanes Islands, the northernmost part of the Philippines famous for its breathtaking views overlooking the Pacific Ocean, is the first tourist destination in the entire country chosen as an INSTO Network member. 

“The Department of Tourism is delighted with the inclusion of Batanes Islands to the highly-regarded UNWTO International Network of Sustainable Tourism Observatories. We congratulate the Batanes Tourism Hospitality Monitoring Center and thank them for all their efforts at inspiring local destinations to prioritize sustainability as it greatly benefits Philippine tourism. We hope to add more of our destinations to this global network in the future,” said Frasco, as she emphasized that “for destinations to thrive until the next generations, sustainability must be at the core of development.” 

The indigenous natives of Batanes, the Ivatans, are also known to be resilient and welcoming people. 

At present, there are UNWTO INSTO operating in nations, including the United States, Spain, Brazil, Greece, Thailand, and Indonesia, with the highest number of INSTO observatories found in China.