PhilippinesBut no closures this time, government says.

Bohol, El Nido to undergo rehabilitation

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Panglao island, Bohol.
Panglao island, Bohol. Photo Credit: Getty Images

The decision followed the approval of the recommendations of the Department of Tourism (DOT) by President Rodrigo Duterte.

The Philippine government will undertake the rehabilitation of Panglao Island in Bohol and El Nido in Palawan.

The decision followed the approval of the recommendations of the Department of Tourism (DOT) by President Rodrigo Duterte.

The President had earlier ordered the six-month closure of Boracay island, which he called a “cesspool.” The popular island destination reopened last October with strict environmental regulations put in place.

President Duterte has approved the recommendation of the Department of Tourism (DOT) for the massive rehabilitation of tourist spots in Bohol and El Nido in Palawan, following the six-month closure of Boracay in Aklan.

Panglao and El Nido are among the Philippines’ popular resort destinations. The order to rehabilitate the two destinations also follows the recent opening of new airports in the two destinations.

DOT Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat said her department, along with the Departments of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and Interior and Local Government (DILG), would ensure the rehabilitation of the two renowned beaches in the country.

Puyat said the President was happy that the rehabilitation efforts are underway and that environment laws are enforced in other areas.

“I was the one who brought it up in the Cabinet, and he said he was very happy,” she said.

The Philippine tourism chief said President Duterte had said all major tourist destinations should follow environmental laws.

The rehabilitation efforts in Bohol and Palawan would be pursued, Puyat said, but she clarified that no closures were needed this time.

DILG Secretary Eduardo Año said that while they were not recommending a total closure of El Nido, there would likely be a crackdown on resorts not complying with environmental laws.

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