ATM salutes Filipino cyclone courage

Honour ... Bengzon Jr receives the<br>award from Walsh

THE Arabian Travel Market (ATM) has named the Philippines as the recipient of its 2013 New Frontiers Award.

Benito Bengzon Jr, assistant secretary, International Tourism Promotions, Department of Tourism Middle East office – Philippines, accepted the award on behalf of the country’s Department of Tourism from Mark Walsh, portfolio director, Reed Travel Exhibitions. The award was made in recognition of the Philippines’ on-going efforts to rebuild physical infrastructure and its tourism economy in the wake of the December 2012 typhoon, which affected 6.2 million people in the south of the country leaving close to one million displaced persons.

Now in its seventh year, the award reinforced the focus of the programme, communicated under the theme ‘Recover, Repair, Rebuild’. Awarded to destinations that have overcome great adversity to bring much-needed tourism back to their shores, the award also honours the strength and determination of the local people who work to rebuild lives following disaster as well as highlighting the crisis management capabilities of local tourism authorities.