Dema Photo shows DOT Region 8 Director Karina Tiopes, Cong. Janice Salimbangon (Cebu 4th District), PDOT-New York Tourism Attache Francisco Lardizabal, DOT Reg. 4 OIC Maritess Castro, Cong. Gerville Luistro (Batangas 2nd DistricT), DOT Dive 7 Project Officer Gloriece Glen Do, DOT Reg. 11 Director Tanya Rabat-Tan, Mabini, Batangas Mayor Noel Luistro and PDOT-NY marketing assistant Joey Chanco.

Luistro promotes Batangas dive sites in int’l diving confab

November 2, 2022 Ryan Ponce Pacpaco 1167 views

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Solon commends DOT, Tourism Sec. Frasco for aggressive promotion of PH, says Marine Sanctuary Verde Island Passage could boost PH tourism post COVID

BATANGAS (2nd District) Rep. Gerville “Jinky Bitrics” Luistro has joined representatives of the Philippine Department of Tourism-New York (PDOT-NY) and Tourism Promotions Board in attending the Dive Equipment and Marketing Association (DEMA) Show 2022, which started Nov. 1 and ends Nov. 4 at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Florida, USA.

“The Annual DEMA is the largest event for companies doing business in scuba diving, ocean water sports and adventure/dive travel industries. It attracts hundreds of exhibitors and thousands of dive and travel industry professionals from around the world,” said Luistro.

“Ang convention na ito ang pinakamalaking magnet ng mga turista na ang hilig ay diving. Magiging mabenta dito ang Pilipinas, lalo pa at kilala tayo sa ating world class beaches, marine sanctuaries at dive sites,” added Luistro, Vice Chairperson of the House Committee on Tourism.

Luistro is actively participating in the convention and is scheduled to speak about the Verde Island Passage.

“This passage, also known as the VIP, is a strait that separates the Luzon from Mindoro. When marine experts and conservationists talk about the VIP, one would often hear that it is the “center of the center of marine shore fish biodiversity,” Luistro added.

“Alam na alam ng mga dive enthusiasts ang Coral Triangle na kung saan may 500 na species ng reef-building corals at one-third ng lahat ng coral-reef fish species sa buong mundo. Ang Coral Triangle ay nasa paligid ng Pilipinas, Indonesia, Malaysia, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands at Timor-Leste. Sa pinakagitna ng Coral Triangle ay ang Verde Island Passage. Kaya ang the VIP ang sentro ng sentro pinaka diverse na marine ecosystem sa buong mundo,” said the Batangas solon.

“Ang mga nagda-dive sa VIP ay waring nadadala sa ibang daigdig. Isa itong underwater wonderland ng giant clams at coral reefs, na kung saan napakaraming mga makukulay na reef fishes, humphead wrasses, anthias, eels, nudibranchs, frogfishes, seahorses, hawksbills, olive ridley at green turtles. Karamihan sa mga sea creatures na ito ay dito lamang masisilayan.”, continued Luistro, who represents the resort towns of Mabini (where Anilao is), Bauan, San Luis, Lobo and Tingloy, in Batangas, where some of the best dive sites in the country are located,” Luistro added.

The Vice Chairperson of the House Committee on Tourism noted that the COVID-19 pandemic has ravaged the Philippine tourism industry.

“It caused the closure or suspension of operations of hotels, resorts and tourist destinations. It has resulted to the loss of thousands of jobs and livelihood. It contributed to the economic crunch the country is presently experiencing,” Luistro added.

“I commend the Department of Tourism, headed by Secretary Christina Garcia Frasco, in being very aggressive in promoting the country and welcoming back tourists and visitors to the country. I believe that the sending of this Philippine delegation to the 2022 DEMA would achieve the objective not only of marketing the country’s dive sites. It would also create awareness on our government and local community’s serious and diligent efforts in preserving our wealth of marine resources, highly diverse coral reefs, pristine waters, mangrove forests, seagrass meadows and coastal environs,” concluded Luistro.

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