TOURISM Secretary Christina Frasco assured Monday, April 17, that her office will promote the province in its tourism campaign.

Yes, absolutely. My presence is showing full support for the province's effort at pushing for the development of tourism in the region, and we are very excited to highlight the richness of the culture and heritage of this province and the deliciousness of the food, the talent, and artistry of the local artisans and makers as well as the beauty of your nature-based destinations," said Frasco who was the guest speaker at the Panaad sa Negros Festival opening ceremony.

Panaad sa Negros will highlight the heritage, talent, and culture of this province and the life and times of this beautiful province, she said.

"I understand that this is the first time that this will be celebrated since 2019, so I'm sure everyone is very excited about the full display of Filipino talent and artistry by way of the Panaad Festival," Frasco said.

She added, “The effort of the Marcos administration has been to really open up the country to tourism to ensure that we give our fellow Filipinos the opportunity to obtain a gainful livelihood by opening up our border and the full support of the president for tourism for the whole country.”

The goal of the DOT under the Marcos administration was to transform the Philippines into a tourism powerhouse in Asia. The president prioritizes tourism under his development agenda, and that means spreading the benefits of tourism nationwide to give opportunities not just to well-known destinations but also to emerging and lesser-known destinations to develop through tourism. The effort is to take a look at the essential pillars of tourism development not just to focus on promotion but also to focus on product development, she said.

“We will be introducing programs to improve infrastructure, connectivity, digitalization, the enhancement of the overall tourist experience, the equalization of tourism opportunities, the strengthening of tourism governance among national and local stakeholders, and most of all, the heralding of the best Filipino brand and identity to the world,” Frasco further said.

She also assured the Negrenses of the DOT's partnership with the province in ensuring that the tourism potential of Negros Occidental is fully developed under the Marcos administration.

Meanwhile, Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson said, "Support for our farmers, whether coffee or bamboo or any other product, is the promise; that's why Panaad was established. Aside from being festive, it's a venue to showcase the products of our local producers. And we are hoping we will be able to attract more attention, especially for our local producers," Lacson said.

The opening ceremony of Panaad sa Negros Festival was attended by all mayors and other local officials in the province.*