By Jojo Mangahis

The Balanga Wetland and Nature Park in Bataan to be recognized as an Ecotourism Zone. BATAAN LOCAL GOV PHOTO

The Senate has approved the development, preservation and conservation of three new tourist destinations all found in Ilocos Sur.

Attractions mentioned were Pinsal Falls in Santa Maria, Candon City Ecotourism Zone and Santiago Cove under House Bill numbers 6800, 6798 and 6799, respectively.

These bills instruct the Department of Tourism (DOT), working alongside with the local government units and other concerned agencies, to craft a tourism development plan that calls for the construction, installation and upkeep of the necessary infrastructure and facilities that shall enhance tourism in the identified localities.

Such a development plan shall be appropriate to the natural characteristics of the new tourist spots to safeguard and preserve the natural beauty and resources of these areas.

Financial resources to undertake said development plans shall be procured from the annual General Appropriations Act and from funds internally generated by DOT.

Moreover, after the development plan has been implemented, DOT is expected to incorporate these three destinations in its national, regional and local promotions.

Earlier, the Senate also passed Senate Bill No. 2228 recognizing the Balanga Wetland and Nature Park in Bataan as an Ecotourism Zone to be able to develop and promote ecological tourism in the area.

As an ecotourism zone, it not only pursues and ensures the conservation of the biodiversity and the preservation of the park but also explores ecotourism products and programs so as to bring about employment opportunities for the locals.