SAN Carlos City in Negros Occidental is among the recipients of the 1st Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) Clean Tourist City award.
The awarding ceremony is scheduled on January 26, 2018 during the Asean Tourism Forum at the Shangri-La Hotel in Chiang Mai, Thailand.
In a letter to Mayor Gerardo Valmayor Jr. dated November 24, Tourism Undersecretary Alma Rita Jimenez congratulated the city government for bagging the award after complying with the requirements of the Asean Clean Tourist City Standard (ACTCS).
Jimenez said that with this recognition, “we hope to hear more series of San Carlos City’s success in the improvement and maintenance of its tourist attractions and contribution to sustainable development.”
The Asean Secretariat, in its website, said the purpose of ACTCS is to provide member-countries with a tool that will improve the quality of tourism in their cities, and increase their marketing competitiveness, but also improve the situation of local residents and their livelihood by alleviating poverty.
It is also designed to protect the environment thus, responding to the impacts of climate change and contributing to the sustainable development of Asean cities.
The standard is based on a series of indicators that will evaluate how sustainable Asean cities currently are, the quality of the tourism they offer, and identification of areas that can be improved.
It will provide Asean countries, including the Philippines, with benchmarks to aim for and ultimately lead to greater tourist satisfaction, greater numbers of visitors, and better conditions for the local population, it said.
The standard focuses on tourist cities where there is flow of visitors and where cultural, natural, and man-made attractions exist.
The indicators evaluated in the ACTCS include environmental management, cleanliness, waste management, awareness-building about environmental protection and cleanliness, green spaces, health safety and urban safety and security, and tourism Infrastructure and facilities.
Prior to this award, San Carlos City was also recognized as one of the Asean’s 50 Landmark Cities and Environmentally Sustainable City.
Cristine Mansinares, provincial supervising tourism operations officer, yesterday said the recognition will increase the competitiveness of the northern Negros city as a destination.
It will make San Carlos City more attractive to tourists and investors, she said.
“It (San Carlos) should sustain the efforts in making the city a business-friendly and competitive one,” Mansinares said, adding that they encourage other local government units to take part in the Asean awards program in the coming years.