The Philippines Is Closing One Of Its Most Popular Islands To Tourists
06 April, 2018, 03:31 | Author: Priscilla Morrison
The temporary closure will begin on April 26 to allow the massive rehabilitation of the island, including dismantling of illegal structures, and upgrading of sewage systems.
Cebu Pacific, the dominant domestic carrier, said it cancelled 14 daily round-trip flights to Caticlan and Kalibo, Boracay's two main gateways, from April 26 to Oct 25, while Philippine Airlines said it would scale down services to the airports and add flights to other destinations. "We estimate the effect on our bottomline to be between $3 million to $5 million (P150 to P50 million)", Logarta said.
Officials said a "soft opening" of the island may be possible in three to four months.
He has accused the island's hotels and restaurants of dumping sewage directly into the sea. "He will not let any resort owner benefit from any sort of a calamity fund", Roque said.
Some large operators welcomed the closure, saying it would create a more sustainable tourism environment, and make it easier to complete ongoing construction work.
Roque assured that not all of the 35,000 workers in Boracay would be jobless. Boracay will always be there.
The closure, which is shorter than the one-year shutdown recommended by the environment department, comes just a few weeks after the government gave Macau casino operator Galaxy Entertainment Group Ltd. permission to build a $500 million casino and resort in Boracay.
He added that the area has seen "unlimited" development because "local government units and the national government agencies did not do their job of enforcing rules on land use, environmental impact assessment". (SMC) which operates Boracay Airport in Caticlan said the long-standing problems with sewage and solid wastes brought about by rapid growth of tourism, commerce and unfettered development must be addressed to ensure Boracay's long-term sustainability.
He also claimed the beachfront had become "over-developed" and threatened to declare a "state of calamity" over the island's pollution.
On Wednesday, Mr Duterte, known for his firebrand, hardline tactics, finally decided that more drastic action was needed, ordering a six month closure of the island's busy tourist industry from.
Tourists pose for photos along a beach on Boracay island.
The decision jeopardises the livelihood of thousands employed as part of a bustling tourist trade on the island that each year serves two million guests and pumps roughly $1billion in revenue into the Philippine economy.
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