DOT chief Frasco takes a dive in Puerto Galera, shows it’s oil spill-free

Tourism Secretary Christina Garcia Frasco has joined scuba divers in Puerto Galera in a bid to show the public that the town is free from oil spill.

“Puerto Galera continues to be unaffected by the oil spill and it continues to open itself to tourism worldwide,” said Franco, who sits as the chairman of the Philippine Commission on Sports Scuba Diving.

“Notwithstanding the difficulties, the challenges, and the calamities this province has and is facing, the Philippines, including Puerto Galera and Mindoro continues to be a beautiful tourist destination,” she said.

The aftermath of the sunken MT Princess Empress’ oil spill has been devastating for the tourism industry, with over 66 popular attractions in affected areas facing the brunt of the environmental disaster. More than 1,400 tourism workers have also been impacted by the spill, leaving many without jobs.

Tourism Secretary Christina Garcia Frasco (second from left), Mayor Rocky Ilagan (third from left). Photo courtesy of DOT

Frasco was joined at the La Laguna Point, a popular dive spot in the tourism town, by Puerto Galera Mayor Rocky Ilagan, Undersecretary for Tourism Regulation, and Mimaropa Tourism Director Zeny Pallugna.

She said that the DOT’s presence in Puerto Galera shows the commitment of the current administration to help the industry recover not only in times of crisis but also during challenging situations.

Apart from scuba diving, Puerto Galera is famous for its white beach and other attractions such as shipwrecks, corals, and other marine life.

Ilagan expressed gratitude to the Department for paying a special visit to the town, citing that Frasco was the first tourism chief to set foot in Puerto Galera since 2003.

The MT Princess Empress was carrying 900,000 liters of industrial fuel when it sank off the coast of Oriental Mindoro last February 28 due to bad engine trouble.

Photo courtesy of Department of Tourism

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