Press Release
November 18, 2010


Senator Juan Miguel F. Zubiri, Chairman of the Senate Committee on Environment and Natural Resources, today said that Tourism Secretary Albert Lim will have to explain to the Senate during its budget deliberation next week how the department has come up with the infamous slogan, " Pilipinas Kay Ganda" and how much it actually spend for it.

" I wonder what the action plan of the Tourism Department is. I would be propounding questions to the Department of Tourism on whose genius idea is it to come up with the slogan that is utilizing our native tongue, Filipino. It is all right if we are going to market the country to locals. But if we are trying to attract people from China, Korea, Japan, the EU countries, and the United States to visit us on hearing " Pilipinas Kay Ganda", they are going to scratch their head and say, 'what the hell are these people talking about?' Zubiri said.

Zubiri who stood up on the Senate floor yesterday to manifest his disgust and disbelief over the new DOT's slogan said that the Tourism department should have consulted stakeholders and various industries.

"I do not want to put any aspersion or bring down the DOT. Ours is just a constructive critic of a slogan that apparently was not told to us during the committee budget deliberation. Because according to Senator Loren Legarda, she asked what the plans were and they said they were in the process of coming out with a slogan. So hind nila ipinaalam ito sa atin at nabigla na lamang po tayong lahat na nagkaroon ng ganitong slogan," he explained.

Zubiri further explained that he is not against the use of the Filipino language but if the tourism campaign's objective is to attract foreign tourists, the department should come up with a "more catchy and easily understood slogan throughout the world."

He cited the effective branding of countries such as Thailand and India that has attracted millions of tourists and the experience of Spain which has tourism as its largest source of income.

"It is not just a matter of slogans, we should also look at the overall view of the tourism industry in the Philippines, the lack of infrastructure, airports and hotels," Zubiri said.

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