Aiming to revitalize the tourism industry of the province, the Palawan Tourism Council (PTC) will stage a virtual Palawan Travel Expo on March 15 to bring tourists closer to the best travel destinations in selected municipalities.

According to PTC, existing health protocols, preparedness of tourism establishments, and interventions to ensure the safety of all tourists will be the highlights of the event. Domestic reopening of major tourist destinations in Palawan including El Nido, Coron, and Busuanga will also be discussed.

Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat in her most recent visit to Palawan said it is the right time to open the tourism industry in the country after a year-long closure due to the pandemic. She said a number of tourism workers were greatly affected by the closure.

“Hiningi din namin kay Secretary Galvez na kung pwede ay unahin ang mga lugar na may turismo. Kailangan na talaga natin simulan o buksan ang turismo, ang daming nawalan ng trabaho, sobra na. We are here to help you para mag-restart ang tourism safely,” Puyat said in a press conference on March 4.

She said along with the opening of tourist destinations, they also have to ensure that they health and safety protocols are properly implemented. “Ayaw namin magbukas ng pabaya. Kung titingnan ninyo sa lahat ng binuksan ay wala kayong maririnig na mayroong nagka-COVID because we always tell every tourist na kahit negative sila sa COVID ay doon pa rin ang safety and health protocols,” she said.

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3rd District Representative Gil Acosta Jr. also said Palawan should remain recognized as the best island worldwide through different infrastructure development projects in Puerto Princesa City and Palawan.

“We are very happy and sana mag-flourish na ang tourism. We are here to help Puerto Princesa City in tourism through infrastracture project. For several years, we are recognized as the best island at hindi pa kumpleto ang mga infrastracture, nature pa lang po ‘yan. But with the development in Puerto Princesa City and Palawan, ay forever nang tayo ang sentro ng turismo not only in the Philippines or Southeast Asia but in the world,” Acosta said.

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is the chief of correspondents of Palawan News. She covers defense, politics, tourism, health, and sports stories. She loves to travel and explore different foods.