Lanao del Sur gains P1.2 billion in tourism revenues
LANAO DEL SUR – Attracting a total of 69,606 visitors in 2016, the province of Lanao del Sur posted some P1.2 billion in tourism receipts during the year and was the No.1 tourism destination among the provinces in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM). Official figures from ARMM’s Tourism department showed 212,649 visited the region’s five provinces in 2016 with roughly P3.7 billion in tourism-related expenditures.
The number of visitors in Lanao del Sur in 2016 was 14% better compared with the 61,058 registered in 2015. “Part of Lanao del Sur governor’s agenda is cultural tourism and promotion of tourist destinations in the province that can help generate income and livelihood to the locals,” said Nouraldin Ahmad Tamano, provincial tourism officer.
He added the province showcases distinct characteristics of the Maranaos way of life, history, and culture.
Lanao del Sur is composed of 39 towns with Marawi City as its provincial capital.
Tamano said one must-see attraction is Lake Lanao, the largest inland body of water in Mindanao and the second largest lake in the Philippines. Lake Lanao serves as reservoir for the Agus hydroelectric power plants that generate up to 75% of Mindanao’s power supply.
The arts and crafts of the Maranao tribe, Polo Barakat Mosque in Binidayan, Kilometer Zero, Mindanao State University and Daguduban in Marawi City; Lake Dapao in Pualas; and white water rafting in Wao could easily lure tourists to the province.
ARMM Tourism Secretary Ayesha Mangudadatu-Dilangalen said the influx of tourists in the region falls in the last quarter of the year. Outside of Lanao del Sur, provincial breakdown of the region’s tourism data in 2016 showed the following:
Tawi-Tawi with 63,509 visitors and P1.1 billion in gross receipts;
Maguindanao with 40,981 visitors and P721 million in gross receipts;
Basilan with 24,243 visitors and P424 million in gross receipts; and
Sulu with 13,857 and P242 million in gross receipts.
“Tourist gross receipts cut across other industries like transport, trade, food, and telecommunications, among others,” Sec. Dilangalen explained.
Tourism, she added, can provide direct jobs to the community. “Visitors' expenditures generate income for the local community and can lead to the alleviation of poverty,” Sec. Dilangalen said. (Bureau of Public Information)