'Most Beautiful Bays' Declaration Seen To Boost Mati Tourism

DAVAO CITY — The inclusion of the Pujada, Mayo and Balete bays in Davao Oriental into the "Most Beautiful Bays in the World (MBBW)" is seen to boost the province's tourism sector, especially its capital, Mati City.

This was according to Mati City Information Officer Ben Jason Tesiorna, who said in a press briefing on Monday that the recognition only served to challenge local officials to protect the three bays even further.

Originally, the provincial government and the City of Mati only applied for the inclusion of Pujada Bay in the prestigious list, but MBBW Association validators included the other two bays as well during their onsite assessment in January this year.

“We did not expect that the other two bays [Mayo and Balete] will be considered since we only applied for the inclusion of Pujada Bay. This will eventually boost our tourism industry, meaning, we can expect more tourists to come to the newly-recognized MBBW bays,” Tesiorna said.

He said Mayor Michelle Rabat is fast-tracking the master plan for the protection of the bays, including the establishment of sewage treatment and a catchment basin to make sure that pollutants would not leak into the bays.

“It is our top priority and its establishment would also be job-generating,” Tesiorna added.

In a previous interview, Rabat stressed the need to establish a sewage treatment plants to ensure that wastes from the households going out to Pujada bay are treated first before ending up in water bodies.

“Here in Mati, everything leads to the bay. We have to make sure that all water leading to the bays be treated and recycled,” she said.

Rabat said the inclusion of the three bays into the MBBWA has become "a challenge for us to do more and persevere in our efforts for the protection and preservation of our environment."

The official awarding for the MBBWA certificate is set to take place during the MBBWA’s annual congress in Morocco this October. (PNA)PIONAIRE FINANCE LIMITED