Drone shot of Boracay Island
BORACAY ISLAND, Philippines – While rehabilitation efforts of the government as well as accreditation of establishments in Boracay are still on-going, the Department of Tourism (DOT) has released a partial list of compliant hotels and resorts on the island.
Twenty-five hotels and resorts are included in the first list of compliant establishments in Boracay island that have complied with the requirements asked by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), and DOT.
Based on the list released through DOT’s official Facebook page, a total of 2,063 rooms will be able to receive reservations for the re-opening of the island on October 26.
According to Attorney Helen Catalbas, DOT-6 regional director, the department plans to release updated lists of compliant establishments on a weekly basis.
“We have four teams assigned in Boracay to conduct inspection of the standards according to DOT accreditations of the establishments there. Even if you are DENR compliant, you are DILG compliant, you still have to hurdle the standard requirements of the Department of Tourism to get accredited,” said Catalbas.
Meanwhile, the tourism department also advised tourists planning to visit Boracay Island to avoid making reservations perchance or walk-ins. “We discourage doing ‘chance’ (reservation) in that the moment they arrive in the island, that’s when they will book (for an accommodation). Because perhaps when they arrive on the island and their hotel and resort are not compliant, they could no longer get an accommodation,” Catalbas explained.
Rather than leaving it perchance, the Tourism Department said it would be better to make sure that the establishment they’re planning to stay in while in Boracay is compliant to the requirements of the concerned agencies to avoid inconvenience.
The DOT is targeting 5,000 foreign and local tourists for the re-opening of the island on October 26. – UNTV News & Rescue
Duterte to skip Boracay reopening
The shores of Boracay after 6 months of rehabilitation. Photo taken on October 5, 2018.
MANILA, Philippines – Despite invitation from Environment Secretary Roy Cimatu to attend the dry run of the reopening of Boracay Island, President Rodrigo Duterte maintained that he would skip the event.
The President said he will not go there so as not to give an impression that he is politicking the event.
Instead, President Duterte said he will only go to Boracay Island if the land titles are ready to be awarded to the Ati tribe and other beneficiaries of the government’s land reform program in the island,
“I will go to Boracay but I will go to distribute the lands given to the Atis. I’m not into sumptuous celebration, but I will go to Boracay to personally distribute land reform program certificates to natives,” the President said in an engagement in Manila on Sunday (October 14).
The President, meanwhile, expects that the local government units will continue the efforts that the national government has initiated for the recovery of Boracay Island.
The LGU has kicked off its week-long dry run ahead of the island’s soft opening next week.
President Duterte ordered a six-month closure of Boracay in April 26 for rehabilitation after it was tagged a “cesspool” because of the rise in pollution level due to lack of proper waste water treatment facility.
“I might go there someday but not just to… Ayaw ko ibandera. Maganda na kasi daw ang Boracay eh. And I saw the footages sa TV. And I hope that now that it’s clean, it has been eradicated of the bacteria,” the President said. – Marje Pelayo (with reports from Rosalie Coz)
DENR to employ control card system in Boracay Island
Aerial view of Boracay sunset | UNTV Drone
BORACAY ISLAND, Philippines – The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) is working double time prior to the reopening of Boracay Island on October 26.
The agency along with the local government unit in Aklan and other stakeholders are now finalizing the regulations to be imposed 36 days before its soft opening.
Based on DENR’s study, the island can accommodate up to 60,000 people as its ideal carrying capacity is expected to produce nine tons of waste materials on the average.
In order to control the possible influx of residents on the island, the agency is planning to employ a control card system in the island
DENR would only allow up to 19,000 tourists a day who would be required to pass through service operators for monitoring.
“Once we hit the critical mark then that’s a red flag for us already to say they have to be able to present their reservations for the hotels that are compliant so that we can advise the hotels that we are already over the limit,” said Aklan Governor Florencio Miraflores.
The number of vehicles on the island will also be trimmed down and old tricycles will be replaced with e-trikes. Hotels, meanwhile, will only be allowed with one service vehicle.
The agency will set up its own satellite office in the island that will ensure that the regulations are strictly followed.
Hotels are subject to performance monitoring and evaluations especially in terms of waste disposal management.
Floating piers will be set up during the soft opening to make it easier for tourists to reach their destination on the island.
A dry run of the soft opening will be held on October 15. – Marje Pelayo (with reports from JL Asayo)
Gov’t agencies to open one-stop-shop in Boracay for permit applications
BORACAY ISLAND, Philippines – Applications for compliance certificates and permit to operate will be easier for establishments on Boracay Island prior to its reopening on October 26.
The Boracay Interagency Task Force is establishing a one-stop-shop for establishment owners in the island to accomplish the necessary documents as required by the government in order for them to resume business once the rehabilitation of the island is completed.
Establishment owners may apply for business permits, compliance certificates and accreditations at the one-stop-shop organized by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), and the Department of Tourism (DOT).
“Establishment owners on the island can fulfill the requirements in compliance with existing laws and regulations. Those who are already compliant can also go to the one-stop shop to secure a clearance from the three agencies,” explained DENR Secretary Roy Cimatu.
On July 18, DENR suspended the environment compliance certificates (ECC) of establishment owners who violated environmental laws. Cimatu has ordered them to comply otherwise they will not be allowed to operate in the reopening in October.
With a one-stop-shop, owners will be able to expedite the process of their compliance while the government can make sure that all establishments opening in October are cleared of any violation.
“Mayron naman kaming data dito…We are giving you the chances to operate…Those na walang record and they are compliant, masabihan lang sila na they are all clear and wala namang babayaran dito,” Cimatu said.
The one-stop-shop is in line with the directive of President Rodrigo Duterte on the strict implementation of the Ease of Doing Business Law. – Vincent Arboleda / Marje Pelayo