All Nippon Airways Considers Davao-Japan Flights

Tokyo-based All Nippon Airways is considering opening direct flights between Davao City and Japan according to a local business leader. The new flights are apparently contingent on the formation of the proposed Davao-Japan Tourism Development and Investment Promotion Council. 

Image Source: Associated Press
According to Keisuke Nakao, President of the Japanese Chamber of Commerce, All Nippon Airways will not launch any flights unless the market potential can be justified. "These are some provisions by ANA. They may extend flights here but there should be a big demand to accelerate investment and tourism here," said Nakao. "The flights cannot operate if there are no passengers."

Currently, the majority of passengers travelling from Japan to Davao are travelling on board connecting flights out of Manila using a combination of services operated by Philippine Airlines, Cebu Pacific, and Japan Airlines. The Davao City Council has commissioned a committee on tourism to deliberate on the formation of the promotion council. 

Although there are already many destinations in Davao city that could be of interest to Japanese investors and tourists, Nakao says that the city must do more to promote more of its destinations. The plans for the creation of the investment and tourism council are still in its early stages of development and the city will need to increase tourism marketing efforts if it intends to attract investors and tourists from Japan. 

"Visitors to Davao always look out for Samal or Mount Apo because they don't notice some of the other attractions when they are in Japan," said Nakao. He added that Japanese citizens may not easily be attracted if that is all the city has to offer. 

Barangay Mintal in Davao is attempting to market its area as a Japanese heritage site. The area features a number of attractions including the Peace Monument, Ohta Kyozaburo Monument, and a number of old style Japanese houses. However, the attractions have yet to be recognized by the region's tourists and investors. 

"Yes, we have a history there in Mintal because of our shared history of Japanese settlers," said Nakao. "But it is not the only one. We have other settlements in other nearby countries."

All Nippon Airways currently operates daily flights from Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Manila to both Tokyo Haneda Airport and Tokyo Narita Airport.

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