After having been confirmed that the Philippines will hold the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit in 2015, the country is now in full force tiding up with things to be done in preparation for the premier Asia-Pacific economic forum.
Foreign Affairs Undersecretary Laura del Rosario said preparations will commence this 2013.
On the other hand, Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog is very positive that the city will get to host the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) ministerial meeting by 2015.
Mabilog said 23 countries in Asia will be participating in the conference with an estimated 5, 000 delegates composed of foreign ministers and their working staff particularly focusing in tourism, finance, health, business and education aspects.
He said Iloilo City is now preparing the availability of hotel rooms, shopping malls, hospitals, airlines, and convention center apart from the 2, 080 available rooms presently.
Mabilog said at present, there are five big hotels under construction in the city and is expected to finish before 2015.
Among these hotels are the two high-end hotels in the Megaworld property at the old Mandurriao airport, Go Hotel of Robinsons, twin tower of Gaisano Hotel, Injap Hotel and Diversion 21 Hotel, all are located along diversion road in Mandurriao district.
The city mayor said the commitment was initiated by Ilonggo Senator Franklin Drilon who is confident to bring investors in Iloilo City.
“The convention is a big opportunity for Iloilo City that we could not just let it go away. This is our opportunity to boast our city and invite investors to come here and invest their money”, he ended.
Iloilo City has offered 4,000 hotel rooms for the lodging of the delegates of the APEC ministerial meeting but currently is having a total number of 2,080 rooms.
With the completion and full operation of the five new hotels including the Injap Hotel, Diversion 21, Gaisano Hotel and international hotels Richmonde and Marriot Courtyard; and the P450-million Iloilo Convention Center by 2014, the city will be able to accommodate the targeted number of delegates.
Department of Tourism (DOT) 6 Regional Director Helen Catalbas said Iloilo is nowpreparing the tourism infrastructures in the region. “So that we would be capable of hosting the international summit, we need to be prepared,” she added.
According to Ben Jimena, Iloilo City Tourism Officer, the preparations of the city will entail a lot of changes but will greatly contribute to the increase of the visitors in the city.
Prior to Philippines’ hosting in 2015, Indonesia will host this year followed by China in 2014 and Peru in 2016.
It was in 1996, during the presidency of President Fidel V. Ramos that the country hosted the APEC Summit in Subic.
APEC is the premier Asia-Pacific economic forum. Its primary goal is to support sustainable economic growth and prosperity in the Asia-Pacific region. IMT