Virtual Events

The Future of Tourism: Exploring the Glamour of Samal Island

Virtual Events

The Island Garden City of Samal has long been a number one tourist destination. It is a living embodiment of a tropical paradise, squeezed into the heart of Davao Gulf, and considered the largest "resort city in the Philippines'' with 18-kilometer coastlines and a cluster of 9 islets. As a unique tourist destination, it is home of pristine beaches, diving spots, waterfalls, and woods filled with a variety of trees and flora. Mangrove forests stretch far into its interior with cave sanctuaries, further illuminating its mystique beauty.

Among its several commercial and private resorts, one of its hidden attractions is the Sanipaan Shoal, or so-called "the vanishing island". Half of the 80-hectare Sanipaan Shoal emerges as a sand bar during low tide but vanishes during high tide creating the illusion of vacationing in the open seas. More than white sand beaches and crystal blue water, IGACOS is also known to be an urbanizing center in a rural setting where it is also considered an ideal location for future investments due to its typhoon-free climate and strategic location. There are also other undiscovered natural tourist attractions like the magnificent Hagimit Falls and the Monfort Bat Cave. All of Samal's phosphatic material deposits can be found in these caves which are all within the vicinity of Babak at the western periphery of the island. Phosphoric acid and ammoniated phosphate fertilizers, animal feed additives, elemental phosphorus, and a range of phosphate compounds for industrial and consumer use, are all produced by these material deposits. Aside from its thriving tourism spots, the city's economy and primary source of income are also heavily dependent on its agricultural output. The island's main exports include copra, mango, corn, vegetables, citrus fruit, and fish. Additionally, rice is produced in the barangays of Libuak in Babak District and Aumbay in Penaplata District. Livestock farming is another important industry on the island.

The city's diverse community and supportive local government unit are one of the reasons why Samal remains vibrant. However, during the pandemic, its tourism sector was severely impacted by travel restrictions and the closure of borders. This was manifested in the sharp 72% decline in the record of tourist arrivals for the first three quarters of 2020; compared to the previous year almost 1.09 million arrivals in Samal. Some of the key actors that can take action in response to this decline in tourism are investors, resort owners, and the local government unit. The Island Garden City of Samal's path to recovery and prosperity will be laid out by their coordinated efforts and strategic plans. As a response, the European Chamber of Commerce will take this initiative towards greater heights by hosting an event, entitled, "The Future of Tourism: Exploring the Glamour of Island Garden City of Samal" which will be held on 04 November 2022, 2:00 - 3:30 PM (GMT + 8) via Zoom to discuss the awaiting opportunities and future investments in the city. This forum seeks to unleash the city's potential and envision initiatives through a shared dialogue with experts in the tourism industry.

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