CLARK, Pampanga – The province of Ilocos Norte was cited as first runner-up in the Best Tourism-Oriented Local Government Unit category during the Department of Tourism-Association of Tourism Officers of the Philippines (DOT-ATOP) Pearl Awards 2016 held in Clarkfield here on October 6.
Ilocos Norte Tourism Officer Aianree Raquel who also led the delegation from the province received the award.
“This goes to Governor Imee R. Marcos for all her hard work…to all our stakeholders and our colleagues in the provincial government,” Raquel said.
Ilocos Norte’s entry focused on Governor Imee R. Marcos’ laying down of concrete steps toward making tourism as a driver of economic development and sustainability in the province through the launching of the Paoay Kumakaway! tourism campaign in 2012.
Under this campaign, tourism in Ilocos Norte became the largest job generating industry as it recorded 20,789 jobs and more than 1.6 tourists last year.
It also paved the way to the continuing refurbishment and development of new tourism facilities and sites, new roads, and active public-private partnership ensuring that everyone contributes to the development of Ilocos Norte.
Raquel said that the award is an affirmation that their efforts are on the right track after six years of hard work under Governor Marcos.
“We hope that this will inspire everyone in Ilocos Norte to work harder, with the same passion and dedication that kept us together for the past years,” he said.
The annual Himala sa Buhangin! Arts and Music Festival and the Tan-ok ni Ilocano Festival of Festival remain as the biggest tourism events in the province that generate thousands of local jobs and attract an overwhelming number of tourists.—(From the report of John Michael Mugas, PGIN-CMO)