Palawan eyed as eco-tourism hub

PUERTO PRINCESA CITY – The three congressmen representing Palawan want the province to be declared the country’s ecological tourism capital.

In House Bill 4273, co-authors and Reps. Gil Acosta, Frederic Abueg, and Franz Josef George Alvarez called for more government support in helping Palawan leaders continue programs to sustain ecological protection and improvement programs for the province.Immediate approval of the HB 4273 or “An Act Declaring the Province of Palawan as the Ecological Tourism Capital of the Philippines” has been sought by the lawmakers and provincial officials.

The bill also proposes the creation of an Eco-Tourism Office that will be administered by the Eco-Tourism board composed of the governor, congressmen representing the three congressional districts of the province; and representatives from the Palawan Council for Sustainable Development, Department of Environment and Natural Resources, Department of Tourism, and the private sector.

Palawan, authors said, is an “exotic paradise in Southeast Asia that had been twice voted the world’s best island.

“With crystal clear blue waters, sandy shores, and a phenomenal underwater river, the idyllic Palawan archipelago easily claimed the top spot in Travel and Leisure magazine’s award,” the three lawmakers said in the explanatory notes of the bill.

The Conde Nast Travel and National Geographic Traveler have also given the province the same prestigious title as the best in the world. Palawan is considered the Philippines’ “Last Frontier.”

Ecological awareness is at high level throughout the province. Puerto Princesa City being the capital considers its critical role as a “steward of biodiverse resources and as the active promoter of the balance of its total economy,” Palawan congressmen noted. (Ben R. Rosario)

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