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Dumaguete City, Philippines Wednesday, January 11, 2017
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Remollo vows to support
sports tourism endeavors

Dumaguete Mayor Felipe Antonio Remollo yesterday vowed to support efforts to promote sports tourism in the city.

He made the commitment during a forum at a local hotel in the city, which featured tourism consultant and businessman Charles Lim of Selrahco Management and Consultancy Services, who will spearhead a sports tourism forum in the city on February 2.

Remollo said sports is, indeed, a tourism draw and Dumaguete City has already proven its worth in previous years to host large-scale sporting events and other competitions.

He cited the recent staging of the University Games in Dumaguete, which was a success. It was the second time for Dumaguete to host the UniGames, the first one in 1998, and both under the watch of Remollo.

He called on sectors to support the sports tourism forum to be led by Lim, whom he has known and worked with, starting with sporting events in Clark, Pampanga, and onwards.

He noted that Clark is now “enjoying the fruits” of what Lim had initiated about five years ago. “We are bullish about sports tourism and this will grow, but we need the support of corporate sponsors to make this succeed,” he added.

Remollo said corporate sponsors are needed around the world, as well as media promotions, to bring in the tourists.

But he cautioned that “sports should be shielded from politics so that we can send the best Philippine athletes to international competitions”.

He noted that in many instances, a Philippine delegation to a sporting competition abroad usually has more officials than athletes, and that practice must be stopped.

Among the necessary steps to complement the promotion of sports tourism, Remollo noted, is the improvement of sports facilities and accommodation.

Sports tourism will put Dumaguete City in the map of the sporting world but first “we have to start building and/or improving the sports facilities here,” Remollo added.

The forum, meanwhile, will bring together resource speakers on a variety of topics, such as how to attract corporate sponsors, budgeting, participating in the bidding process, and how to organize sporting events especially during the off-season, among others, Lim said.

Lectures and workshops will also include preparing project proposals and marketing strategies, he added.

Lim said he is hoping to get the full support, cooperation and participation of local government units and the business establishments to make use of sports to boost the local tourism industry.

There is a lot of potential here, Lim noted, citing Apo Island which is a renowned dive destination and which he describes as “one of the best dive spots in the world”.

Sports tourism is any activity where people are attracted to a particular location as a sport event participant, an event spectator, or to attend sports-related business meetings, Lim said.

This creates new revenue streams and resources for local event organizers, sports-friendly businesses and sports in general, he added.

The Sports Tourism Forum was established in 2005 by Selrahco Management, and has been held in many cities in the Philippines previously, such as Cebu, Bacolod, and Subic. It aims to help a city or province become “the ultimate sports host venue” with its vision to include being able to evaluate sporting and tourist facilities of each destination, particularly the capacities and standards, stadiums, hotels and transportation;

To establish the sports appropriate for each destination and its viability; establish LGU and national sports association support; provide inputs on sports event organizing, marketing and sponsorship; and provide inputs on media exposure on destination marketing.*PNA


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