London, 28 September 2016 - The Philippine Embassy in London hosted the executive committee meeting as well as the 23rd annual general meeting of the Pacific Asia Travel Association UK Chapter (PATA UK Chapter) in London last 26 September 2016.

pataAmbassador Evan Garcia addresses the PATA UK Chapter Executive Committee and Annual General Meeting at the Philippine Embassy in London

In his welcome address to the PATA UK Chapter general meeting, Philippine Ambassador to the UK Evan Garcia recognized the leading role of PATA in its global campaign to promote responsible tourism in Asia Pacific, and the region being the top source market in the global tourism industry.

Ambassador Garcia also lauded the PATA UK Chapter’s big efforts to promote the robust travel exchange between the United Kingdom and the Asia Pacific region. He encouraged PATA officials to continue to work together to overcome the challenges posed by Brexit which resulted in the devaluation of the pound sterling and slower growth in UK outbound tourism due to costly travel arrangements. He reassured the group that the British appetite for travel could not be stopped, as he shared the continued increase of the UK outbound travel to the Philippines (+14% as of July 2016), as well as the solid economic growth of the country which is one of the best performing economies in the world (7% GDP growth in the 2nd Quarter of 2016).

Headed by Chris Crampton, the PATA UK Chapter, originally formed in 1962 with just 12 members, belongs to the PATA international network of 39 worldwide chapters. PATA is the leader, advocate and catalyst for developing Asia Pacific’s travel and tourism industry. It is a global organization with over 2,500 members comprising 42 member destinations and their airlines, hotel groups, tour operators, travel agents, PR companies, cruise liners, and journalists, among others.

The Philippine Department of Tourism (PDOT) office in London is a member of the executive committee of the PATA UK Chapter. Tourism Attaché Gerry Panga and his PDOT team participate actively in the PATA business networking activities held regularly in London and other key source cities in the UK.

The PDOT tapped Romulo’s Café on Kensington High Street, London, to serve some authentic and tasty Filipino snacks to the participants at the PATA UK Chapter general meeting. END