By Edward B. Antonio
CABUGAO, ILOCOS SUR – Representative Deogracias Victor “DV” Savellano (1st District-Ilocos Sur) has announced the approval by the Congress of the creation of the North Luzon Growth Quadrangle Development Authority (NLGQDA) through House Bill 4995 which he sponsored so as to prepare Region I, II and CAR for the industrialization of the area and “for the government’s possible shift to federalism”.
“Once the bill passes through the Senate and approved by President Rodrigo Duterte, it will serve as a vehicle to negotiate for the development of Northern Luzon and hasten the development of the area by increasing trade, tourism and investments, encouraging private enterprise, generate jobs and develop infrastructures,” Savellano, who is also appointed as the chairman of the NLGQDA, said during an interview with him by local media recently.
He also said that through the NLGQDA, the regions will also have the authority to directly negotiate with neighboring countries particularly with China for the development of tourism in the region, particularly Ilocos Sur.
“There are around 400 million Chinese who are ready to tour the world. If we can persuade even just 1% of this 400 million, we will have at least 4 million Chinese tourists visiting our place,” he said.
Savellano, who also authored House Bill 905 establishing the Special Economic Zone and Freeport in the Province of Ilocos Sur, also announced the continuation of the development of Salomague Port in Cabugao which will serve as a docking port for cruise ships or passenger ships equipped for leisurely activities.
“Salomague Port has deep and calm waters, better than neighboring ports that’s why it needs to be developed. Works are ongoing and by next year, it will be ready to function for that purpose,” he said.
Meanwhile, his bill that would mandate the conservation of Gabaldon school buildings nationwide, has been approved by the House and has been transmitted to the Senate for deliberation and approval.
“Gabaldon schools are already a part of our heritage especially here in the Heritage Province of Ilocos Sur. Through Kannawidan, we can preserve our rich heritages in the past, be proud of them and make them a vehicle for the development of tourism in our province,” he said.
Savellano, the brainchild of Ilocos Sur’s annual Kannawidan festival, said that he has also filed a bill that will make every February 2 and March 19 as non-working holidays for Ilocos Sur to celebrate Ilocos Sur Day and Gabriela Silang Day respectively.#