Ace eyes replicating DOT programs for Cebu’s economic recovery
CEBU CITY, Philippines – If elected as Cebu’s newest governor, former Tourism Sec. Ace Durano is planning to replicate several programs from the national government to help Cebu’s ailing tourism industry.
In a press statement, Durano announced that he wants to adopt the Grassroots Entrepreneurs for Ecotourism (GREET) initiative to tourism workers and players, both in the private and public sectors, in the province by dangling funds up to P1 million.
Named the Cebu Priority Recovery (CPR) program, Durano said it aims not only to lure foreign tourists to visit Cebu once again but also to generate jobs for the locals.
“We have so many potential eco-tourism sites in Cebu. Dili lang ang mga waterfalls, apil na ang mga hiking trails, mountain trails or camping spots,” he said.
“This is not just for new players who can come up with new ideas to help tourism in Cebu but the current players also who are struggling due to the Covid-19 pandemic,” he added.
GREET, implemented in 2005 during Durano’s tenure as chief of the Department of Tourism (DOT), grants individuals or groups capital between P50,000 to P100,000 to help develop an eco-tourism site.
“We have discussions about this with the different business groups and they are fully behind the goal. There are existing models we can apply here so we can achieve this without compromising the health and safety of everyone,” Durano explained.
Durano served as Secretary of Tourism under the administration of Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo from 2004 to 2010.
He is running as governor, facing incumbent Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia, for next year’s elections.
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