Private sector urged to invest in Boracay projects

By Leslie Gatpolintan

October 25, 2018, 7:44 pm

MANILA -- The government urged private enterprises to invest in projects meant to support sustainable tourism in Boracay which is scheduled to reopen Friday.

“So we are reopening, there are interventions done by the government but those are not enough. We still need to implement projects and programs that will rehabilitate the ecosystem of Boracay,” said National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) Undersecretary for Regional Development Adoracion Navarro during an interview in Manila.

Navarro particularly cited opportunities to invest in sewerage and sanitation, and water supply expansion.

“We also included investment programs for sewerage. Baka kasi iniisip ng iba, kapag (perhaps others will think that if) investment for tourism, it’s really to rehabilitate the island, to make the island sustainable,” she noted.

Navarro said the Boracay Island Water Co. Inc. (BWIC) and Boracay Tubi Systems Inc. (BTSI) are the same water concessionaires in the island.

“I think the focus should be on the reasons why Boracay was closed and that has been discussed by the task force and that has been confirmed by subsequent testings in Boracay different indicators on the state of the environment,” she added.

The world-famous tourist destination had been closed to tourists for six months since April 26 to make way for the government’s rehabilitation efforts amid sewerage and environment-related problems.

Navarro further said that putting in place the sustainability of the island’s activities, including reliable infrastructure and utilities, is among the four themes outlined under the medium-term Boracay Action Plan (BAP), consisting of public and private sector projects.

Others include enforcement of laws and regulations, pollution control and prevention, and rehabilitation and recovery of the ecosystem, she added. (PNA)