“Guimaras helps make tourism of Iloilo City more attractive and competitive”, said Department of Tourism Region VI Director Atty. Helen J. Catalbas after her meeting with Mayor Ruben Corpuz of Jordan, Guimaras during the site inspection of DOT VI to Alibhon Market for DOT VI Market Day Tourism recently.
Director Catalbas is positive that Guimaras is one of the biggest suppliers of food for tourism-related establishments in Iloilo City. She said Guimaras may not have big volume of tourists but it is one of the primary sources of food and other fresh resources served to tourists in Iloilo City.
“While Guimaras may not be a primary destination like Iloilo City, the island province supplies big chunk of the food requirements of both residents and visitors of its highly urbanized neighbor. The province of Guimaras is not just the source of the sweetest mangos in Western Visayas but also the provider of poultry products, pork and beef, fishes and a variety of fruits. It also serves as an attraction of residents and tourists of Iloilo City”, Director Catalbas explained.
Director Catalbas urged the local government units of Guimaras to record all products the province is supplying to Iloilo City for these figures can be used to determine the effect of tourism to the daily lives of the Guimarasnons. She added Guimarasnons may not be aware but they greatly contribute to the tourism industry of Western Visayas.
“Iloilo City and Guimaras complement each other. The key is these two destinations should work together to create better tourism products and services for the tourists. Tourism awareness workshops and skills training programs are among the programs DOT VI will conduct in partnership with the LGUs. We will make sure that our products and services are ready for the influx of tourists”, Director Catalbas concluded.
Iloilo City and Guimaras are the pilot areas of DOT VI Market Day Tourism to be launched on November 2016 in partnership with Iloilo City Government and Municipality of Jordan and Province of Guimaras. Site inspections are done to assess the readiness and potential of the markets to become tourist destinations for tour operators to sell. [via DOT VI]