December is here, which means its time to take some rest and go on a holiday with some friends and family. Are you looking for a country that will meet your requirement in the halal market, a Muslim-friendly destination?
If you are then you should set your sights on Philippines in a few years.
Philippines is on the way to becoming the next Muslim-friendly destination. It’s the first to host The Halal Guys, that famous food cart in New York. Not only that, the Department of Tourism (DOT) and the National Commission on Muslim Filipinos (NCMF) are jointly implementing “The Philippine Halal Tourism Project” that aims to make tourism establishments halal-certified and it has identified 10 hotels and resorts in Cebu and 20 other establishments from Metro Manila, 10 from Boracay and 10 from Metro Davao. Those establishment will be participating in the pilot implementation of the project from December 2015 until February 2016.
Based on the market factors, DOT Regional Director Rowena Montecillo said, last year statistics showed that 7% or 348,970 tourists of the total number of visitors to the Philippines were from Arab and Muslim countries who require halal-certified food and drinks. She also added:
“This forms our base market for halal services, not yet adding those markets with special dietary restrictions. The objective of the project is to make the Philippines a Muslim-ready destination”.
Participating establishments will be given incentives, including construction and retro-fitting of facilities, purchase of equipment and materials, halal certification, provision of training, and inclusion of the establishments in the Philippines halal tourism project information campaign. With this project, Philippines hopes to get a share in the global halal industry and by creating more establishments to be halal-certified, Philippines will be able to accommodate more Muslim tourists who has specific dietary needs and looking for Muslim-friendly environment.
These are 10 hotels and resorts in Cebu that are becoming more friendly for Muslim tourists!
So, if you are still trying to figure out which country you would like to spend your coming holiday in, then you got your answer. It’s Cebu Island in the Philippines, but wait a couple more years, and till then, ask the places you go to if they serve halal food, and if there are musollahs.
Which country do you think will next be developing their services to attract Muslim tourists? Laos? Myanmar? The opportunities in Southeast Asia abound as Muslim dollar increases.
Written by Khulood Algafri.