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Drilon helps fund P450-M Iloilo convention center

/ 09:01 PM November 18, 2012

ILOILO CITY—A P450-million convention center will be built on a 1.7-hectare lot at the old Iloilo airport property. The move is expected to establish the province as a conference hub in Western Visayas.

The funding for the construction of two-story convention center will come from the Priority Development Assistance Fund of Sen. Franklin Drilon. It will be designed by Ilonggo architect Willy Coscoluella.

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The site of the project was donated by Megaworld Corp., which now owns the 54-ha property that once served as the old Iloilo airport.

The deed of donation between Megaworld and the Department of Tourism (DOT) was signed at Marriott Hotel in Manila on Nov. 13.

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In a statement, Drilon said the convention center would enable Iloilo to hold the best and most glamorous conferences and exhibitions.

“This is a realization of a lifelong dream of the residents of Panay Island to have their own highly impressive and sophisticated convention center, at par with those of Cebu and Davao,” Drilon said.

This would boost the chances of Iloilo since the province plans to vie for the hosting of the Asia Pacific Economic Council meeting in the first quarter of 2015, especially since the Iloilo International Airport serves both local and international flights.

Iloilo City Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog said the presence of a convention center would also boost the earnings of local businesses as these would benefit from the influx of visitors.

“We could already host not only national conventions, but also Asian level conventions,” said Mabilog who witnessed the signing of the deed of donation.

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