Published on Friday, April 6, 2018

Six-month Boracay shutdown begins this month

The Philippine holiday island of Boracay is to be shut down for six months over environmental concerns.

The country's president, Rodrigo Duterte, has made good on his threat and ordered the entire closure of the island from April 26 after saying it was turning into a 'cesspool'.

He had accused the island's hotels and restaurants of dumping sewage directly into the sea.

The government said tourism businesses on the island would receive financial support for their losses.

The island attracted nearly two million visitors last year.

Philippine tourism stakeholders had previously warned that closing Boracay would damage the whole of the country's tourism.

Authorities have identified nearly 1,000 buildings which either violate or don't have required permits and some of these could be razed during the shut-down.

It will prioritise sewage treatment and waste disposal facilities as the overcrowded island generates up to 100 tonnes of trash daily.

Airlines have started informing customers of impending flight suspensions.

It affects Philippine Airlines, Cebu Pacific, and Philippines AirAsia.

AirAsia announced six-month suspensions of nearly all flights to gateway airports Caticlan and Kalibo, including international routes from Seoul, Busan and Shanghai.

However it will maintain one domestic flight daily to both airports from Manila.

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  • Boracay 1985 - Far Cry from Today's Closure

    My blog focusing on the comparisons of Boracay 30+ years ago - with reflection and images from 1985.

    By Jono Vernon-Powell, Friday, April 6, 2018

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