New Iloilo Convention Center to drive tourism, bring jobs for Ilonggos
Written by Mr. Jetro Lozada, TIEZA (Press Release)
Iloilo’s tourism and job-creating economic development will soon receive a huge boost with the upcoming inauguration of the newly-completed and state of the art Iloilo Convention Center (ICC).
President Benigno S. Aquino III and Senate President Franklin M. Drilon will fly to Iloilo City next Monday, September 14, to lead the unveiling of the Iloilo Convention Center, which is seen by local business leaders as “Iloilo’s ticket to being the prime convention and events destination in the whole Western Visayas’ region.”
Located within the Business Park developed by Megaworld in Mandurriao district, the two-storey ICC is designed to host local and international conferences and exhibitions. It can accommodate more than 3,000 people at any given time. The ground floor plenary hall, with a ceiling clearance of 16 meters, can be divided into four halls. On the second floor there are seven function rooms, a museum and a VIP room.
The ICC has a unique architectural design made by renowned Ilonggo architect William Coscolluela, inspired by the paraw, a double outrigger sailboat native to the Visayan region. Its glass walls feature abstract designs of the Dinagyang Festival; and indigenous stones are used in the façade and interiors of the building.
The ICC is a key project championed by Drilon, who has been very instrumental in the development of Iloilo. The Ilonggo leader said the ICC will benefit ordinary Ilonggos the most, as the spur of economic activity the ICC may bring more jobs and sources of livelihood for the residents of Iloilo and neighboring areas: “As we speak, new hotels near the ICC site are already being constructed and people are being hired, which just goes to show the ICC’s potential.”
Drilon also pointed out that the ICC will soon be the venue for three major Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation ministerial meetings which will be attended by officials from countries all over the Asian continent – the Senior Disaster Management Officials Forum from September 22-23; the Ministerial Meeting on Small and Medium Enterprises from September 21-25; and the Ministerial Meeting on Food Security and Blue Economy from September 28-October 6.
Former Tourism secretary and now Iloilo Economic Development Foundation President Narzalina Lim agreed with the Senate President, saying that the ICC “will draw local and international guests for large-scale conventions, summits, congresses, trade fairs and exhibits, and other important events and put the country - particularly Western Visayas - on the business tourism map.”
The ICC is owned by the Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority (TIEZA), the infrastructure arm of the Department of Tourism. The operations and maintenance of the building will be bid out to the private sector in the long term. - END
Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority
Mr. Jetro Lozada
Tel. (0908) 825-0146
Atty. Guiller Asido
Tel. (0918) 918-4328