Mayor Lucilo Bayron has announced intentions for the Puerto Princesa city government to delegate the management of the Subaraw Festival to the private sector.

The city mayor said the move is aimed at elevating the festival’s profile and fostering its growth as an international event, showcasing the renowned underground river.

In his remarks at the launching of the festival in Barangay Cabayugan on Friday, November 3, Mayor Bayron explained that the city government’s decision to transfer the Subaraw Festival’s management to the private sector is intended to bolster its presence in international communities.

“Papaano na ang direksyon natin? Dadagdagan natin yong international event, at dahan-dahan, tinitingnan natin yong ating Subaraw partners—dahil tulad ng Sinulog, tulad ng MassKara—ito ay nagsimula na event ng pamahalaang lungsod, pero dahan-dahan nai-turnover sa private sector,” Mayor Bayron said.

He explained that through this approach, the city government would primarily assume a supervisory role and offer a seed fund to support the initiative.

Bayron further elaborated that the city government is evaluating whether its Subaraw partners are ready to assume responsibility before the upcoming handover.

“Tinitingnan natin yong ating Subaraw partners, hintayin natin na ready na sila, at kung sigurado tayo na ready na sila, ituturnover natin sa kanila yong planning and management ng Subaraw Festival,” he said.

He also clarified that the city government managing the festival poses a significant drawback, as it is not permitted to engage in fundraising activities.