The Philippine Convention and Visitors Corporation (PCVC) will validate the readiness of Davao City of hosting the Meetings Incentives Conventions Exhibitions (MICE) in 2012.
Susan Palad, vice president representing Mindanao at the Tourism Congress, said hosting the MICE is an important event for the tourism sector as this will gather not only domestic but also international event organizers.
“If they consider the area, they would bring in several thousands of visitors,” she said.
Palad said the PCVC team headed by Rose Gaitos is here to assess the capability of its resources and facilities of the city.
She said MICE is the most coveted conference that brings in the big players to the convention among them are event organizers from Australia, America, Singapore.
The MICE also includes the participation of editor-in-chief and travel writers and a lot other organizers who are responsible for the bringing in thousands of people and visitors in the area, she said.
Palad said the bidding is now between Davao and Camarines Sur although, she said they have to promote Davao in high profile and its destinations.
But she said Davao has a good chance with better accommodation than Camarines Sur where the former has been in the tourism spot barely two or three years ago.
“Davao is already an established destination and all we need to do is to show the capabilities of the city,” she said.
Davao’s edge, she said, is the active participation of the private sector in close coordination with the government sector.
Given the chance to host the MICE, Palad said, the convention could be held at Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas building and there are other new areas that are being considered.
During the pre-MICE Convention at Subic early this month, Palad said the convention was held at a rehabilitation warehouse and this thing could also be done in Davao.
She said several green meetings are also held among smaller groups and these are done under coconut trees and other similar venues.
“In Davao venue for green meetings is not a problem because the city is very close to nature and it has this kind of resources just very near the city proper,” Palad said.
She cited Marilog could be an ideal place, the area with cool weather and rich in vegetation and natural sites like spring, tree farms and vegetable, flower and flower farms.
But Palad admitted that other participants might try other area like the Camarines Sur where it has been exposed to the international scene with the many foreign events being held there like the competition on wakeboarding, sports, extreme challenge and survival race.
“We just don’t know whether these event organizers are curious what is in Camarines Sur why most of the international events are held there that they would push for it,” she said.
Palad said they really need to promote well Davao even as she admitted that they lack collaterals about the city. More money should be spent on collaterals because we are a bit lacking on this.
But she said they are still confident they can make it because everything is already here and the fact that Davao City already hosted the Asean Tourism Forum, the city has long been prepared for the international scenario because everything is ready here even as they continue to announce to “Make It Davao Now”.