Reviving Direct Flights Between the Philippines and New Zealand: Boosting Tourism and Trade

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President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. Aims to Strengthen Tourism and Trade Ties between the Philippines and New Zealand

President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. has expressed his desire to further boost tourism and trade ties between the Philippines and New Zealand through the restoration of air links between the two countries. During a meeting with New Zealand Ambassador to the Philippines, Catherine Rosemary McIntosh, at Malacañang last Tuesday, President Marcos emphasized the potential for increased travel and exchange between the two nations.

Exploring New Opportunities for Travel and Exchange

President Marcos acknowledged the mutual interest of Filipinos and New Zealanders in visiting each other’s countries. He stated, “Filipinos would love to go to New Zealand, and I do believe that New Zealanders would like to see the Philippines as well. So, I think that’s another area of interest that we should explore and hope to promote during your stay here.”

The President expressed his expectation that the regulators and carriers of both nations will engage in discussions regarding the restoration of direct air service between Manila and New Zealand. This reestablished connectivity would not only facilitate tourism but also contribute to the economic transformation that President Marcos envisions for the Philippines.

Addressing Infrastructure Challenges and Expanding Airports

President Marcos recognized the need for improved airport infrastructure to accommodate the growing demand for air travel. He highlighted the congestion at Manila’s airport and emphasized the government’s commitment to upgrading regional airports.

“We need two new airports. We are in the process of building them, but for now, I think the way to go is to provide access to the smaller regional airports, which are close to or within the tourist destinations,” President Marcos explained. He further emphasized the importance of decongesting Manila and catering to both leisure and business passengers.

Unlocking the Potential of Direct Air Service

Ambassador McIntosh echoed President Marcos’ sentiments and emphasized the potential benefits of restoring direct air service between Manila and New Zealand. She noted that a significant proportion of passengers traveling from Sydney to Manila actually originate from New Zealand.

“It’s a good proportion that I think we can make commercially viable,” Ambassador McIntosh stated. Restoring direct air service would not only enhance convenience for travelers but also contribute to the economic growth of both countries.

Contextualizing the Importance of Tourism and Trade

Tourism and trade play vital roles in the economic development of nations. By strengthening ties between the Philippines and New Zealand, both countries can benefit from increased cultural exchange, business opportunities, and mutual growth.

The Philippines, known for its stunning natural landscapes, rich history, and warm hospitality, has been attracting a growing number of international tourists in recent years. New Zealand, with its breathtaking scenery, adventure tourism, and unique Maori culture, also offers a wealth of attractions for travelers. By promoting tourism between the two countries, President Marcos aims to capitalize on the shared interests and potential for growth in the travel industry.

In addition to tourism, trade between the Philippines and New Zealand holds significant potential. Both nations have complementary economies, with the Philippines offering a diverse range of products such as electronics, garments, and agricultural goods, while New Zealand is known for its high-quality dairy products, meat, and wine. Strengthening trade ties can lead to increased investment, job creation, and economic prosperity for both countries.


President Ferdinand Marcos Jr.’s commitment to boosting tourism and trade ties between the Philippines and New Zealand through the restoration of air links demonstrates his vision for economic transformation and international collaboration. By exploring new opportunities for travel and exchange, addressing infrastructure challenges, and unlocking the potential of direct air service, both countries can benefit from increased tourism, trade, and mutual growth. As President Marcos and Ambassador McIntosh work towards strengthening the relationship between the Philippines and New Zealand, the future holds promising prospects for enhanced cultural exchange, economic cooperation, and shared prosperity.

Source: The Manila Times

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