BAGUIO CITY – Mayor Mauricio G. Domogan called on businessmen in Baguio and Benguet to cooperate with the local governments and concerned government agencies by not taking advantage of the influx of visitors once the country’s Summer Capital and Salad Bowl will be chosen as the host of the 2018 Palarong Pambansa in unreasonably increasing the prices of their goods.
The local chief executive admitted that businesses will be the direct beneficiaries of the influx of over 50,000 athletes, sports officials and members of their families who will be flocking to the city once the Palaro games will be held in Baguio and Benguet that is why businessmen should also cooperate by not increasing their prices but instead provide or offer attractive discounts to their expected clients.
“It will be premature for us to be meeting with our business sector because we are still busy preparing for our bid before the Palaro Selection board. We will be holding series of meetings with the business sector once we will be awarded the right to host the 2018 national sports competition,” Domogan stressed.
He explained the businesses in Baguio and Benguet are part of the show window of the local governments in the staging of the Palaro that is why it is best to engage them to be able to depict to the visitors that they should always be coming to Baguio and Benguet for them to spend a well deserved break after the holding of the Palaro games.
According to him, Baguio City has been known to be the ‘ukay-ukay’ or ‘wagwagan’ center of the country while Benguet is the source of quality highland vegetables and strawberries as well as cutflowers that is why it is but proper for the concerned businessmen to make sure that their prices remain affordable not only during the regular days but also during special events being conducted in the said areas like the hosting of the Palarong Pambansa.
Domogan added it will be best for everyone once they will be able to depict to the visitors a lasting image that will entice them to be frequenting Baguio and Benguet in the future purposely to visit the scenic tourist destinations that will contribute in spurring economic growth in the said areas.
He also encouraged the owners of hotels and restaurants to offer attractive discounts for the huge volume of visitors that will flock to the city for the duration of the Palaro once Baguio and Benguet will succeed in their bid to host the said sports competition.
The city official claimed the concerned local governments will indirectly benefit from the hosting of the Palaro because there will be a significant increase in the taxes that will be paid by the responsible businessmen as a result of the increase in their sales following the influx of visitors for the week-long sports event in the said areas.
Concerned stakeholders, local officials and private sector partners are optimistic that the Palaro Selection Board will give course to the evident advantages of Baguio and Benguet in the hosting of next year’s Palarong Pambansa since it will be the first time that the said local governments will be hosting the prestigious national sports competition.
By Dexter A. See