TPB, CDC help turn North Phil into MICE center

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Sunday, April 13, 2014


CLARK FREEPORT -- The Tourism Promotions Board (TPB) and the Clark Development Corporation (CDC) have vowed to turn Central and Northern Luzon into a preferred destination for meetings, incentive travel, conventions and exhibits/events (MICE). 

The two entities cited North Philippines’ emerging facilities and attractions for the domestic and international MICE requirements.

An agreement forged between TPB chief operating officer Domingo Ramon Enerio III and CDC chief executive officer Arthur Tugade signaled the start of activities toward reaching that goal. 

“The TPB and the CDC will jointly promote North Philippines as a MICE destination beginning with the Clark Freeport and Special Economic Zone, which hosts the Clark International Airport and a prime segment of the Subic-Clark-Tarlac Expressway (SCTEX), both to bring in the people from various parts of the country and the world,” Enerio said. 

“The promotional campaign is envisioned to create the demand for increased investments in MICE facilities and other support infrastructure -- from Clark to other MICE hubs like Subic and Baguio and spreading to the rest of Northern Luzon,” he said. 

The region accounted for nearly 14 percent or over 1.5 million of the country’s foreign and domestic tourist volume of 11.7 million in 2010. 

That number is expected to surge significantly as the Clark International Airport now handles almost a million passengers bound for the various surrounding destinations. 

Clark’s popularity got a boost from a survey by the FDI magazine of the London-based Financial Times Group naming it the third best airport freeport zone in the world. 

The Clark Freeport and Special Economic Zone hosts many facilities that cater to the needs of visiting MICE participants, who are estimated to account for a big chunk of visitors in the area. 

Aside from MICE facilities, there are many leisure, wellness and lifestyle centers and cultural, historical and natural attractions for the MICE delegates’ pre- and post-event tours. 

Tourism destinations in the surrounding provinces up to the northernmost part are also accessible by land and offers both mountain and marine destinations and everything in between. 

The TPB-CDC agreement starts with the staging of MICE Conference (MICECON) 2014 at the Fontana Hot Spring Leisure Parks in Clark on June 4 to 7. 

Under the agreement, the CDC will provide all ground and special arrangements, including safety and security, for MICECON 2014. 

The CDC will also form an organizing committee to provide the physical and technical requirements and the support staff to the TPB for onsite activities, including the design and execution of the promo campaign for MICECON’s pre-, proper and post-event activities. 

The other MICECON 2014 organizers are the Meetings, Incentive Travel, Exhibitions/Events Philippines Inc. (MITE Philippines) and the Philippine Association of Convention and Exhibition Organizers and Suppliers (PACEOS). 

“The MICECON 2014 will provide a platform to strengthen and integrate all sectors of the MICE industry into one cohesive and comprehensive educational program. It will tackle a wide range of topics from issues and trends in travel and tourism to industry-specific workshops on MICE marketing,” Enerio said.

“Most importantly, MICECON 2014 will showcase the MICE capabilities of the host destinations, hone the skills of practitioners, upgrade their services and facilities, and develop a continuing strategy for the industry,” Enerio added. 

Constituting the MICECON 2014 are the two-day MICE Conference for all the industry discussions on knowledge resource, the MICE Mart for the one full-day of business-to-business transactions between the foreign buyers and local sellers, and the MICE Marketplace for the four-day exhibits of the domestic industry players. 

With the theme MICE in 4D (Driving Passions, Developing Minds, Defying Limits, Designing the Future), MICECON 2014 will bring in around 40 select MICE buyers from Australia, China, Korea, Taiwan, Singapore, United Kingdom, Germany, Poland and Russia. 

The official participating hotels in the MICECON 2014 include Fontana Hot Spring Leisure Parks, Widus Hotel and Casino, Holiday Inn Clark and Montevista Villas - Mimosa Golf & Country Club. 

Inquiries on registration can be directed to the MICECON Secretariat (c/o TPB, MICE and Business Development Unit, Tel. Nos. (63 2) 525-6635 / 525-9318 to 27 loc.256 / Fax No. (63 2) 521-6165 / email: cit@dotpcvc.gov.ph/ miceregn2014@yahoo.com / tpb.specialevents@yahoo.com). 

For participants based in Clark area, contact Josephine Poyaoan of the Clark Organizing Committee for more details, Tel. Nos. (63 45) 599-6235 / Mobile: 0917-839-0403 / email: JosephinePoyaoan@clark.com.ph. (PR)

Published in the Sun.Star Pampanga newspaper on April 14, 2014.

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