Tourism credited for Cebu-Crimea sisterhood

The Autonomous Republic of Crimea in Ukraine picked Cebu Province for its sisterhood agreement in the Philippines because its officials wanted to learn from Cebu’s tourism program.

Vladimir Degtyarev, head of the office of interregional cooperation and international organizations, said they have seen how Cebu “drafted a dynamic program” in tourism aside, as well as its efforts in trade and preserving the cultural heritage.

He said the Province of Cebu is one of the most dynamic in its development, especially in the field of culture, health and tourism.

He said they hope to find some specific common ground and to make concrete steps on the points marked in the agreement.

Most of Crimea’s sisterhood agreements are with local governments in other European countries, like France and Bulgaria.

Cebu Gov. Gwendolyn and First Vice Prime Minister of the Council of Ministers Pavel Burlakov signed the agreement Friday afternoon in Crimea, as one of the highlights during the Black Sea Economic Forum held in the Palmira Palace hotel.

Crimea’s invitation had been forwarded to the governor by Consul General Oscar de Venecia of the Consulate of Ukraine in Manila.

Considering the “mutual interest” of Cebu and Cremia in deepening, strengthening and expanding economic, scientific technical and cultural cooperation, it will cooperate in 14 specific areas, including industry, agriculture, transport, science, engineering, education, health protection, culture, art, tourism, sport, ecology and rational use of natural resources.

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Burlakov also signed the same agreement with the Crimea and the Burgas region in Bulgaria and its governor also expressed interest to sign a sisterhood agreement with Cebu.

Garcia, during the bilateral meeting with Burlakov, expressed her gratitude for choosing Cebu for the sisterhood program.

“The parties will promote mutual development of trade, manufacturing, investment and other types of economic cooperation,” the agreement stated.

The first step to take in the tourism industry is to establish the flight route, said Garcia.
Garcia said it took her about 18 hours to travel from Cebu to Crimea for the signing of the sisterhood agreement.

Garcia said she will be happy to welcome tourists to Cebu, noting it has “perpetual sunlight”.

She said the province is known as the Milan of Asia because it produces “the finest furniture, gifts, toys and housewares.”

“We can encourage furniture manufacturers to seek new markets in these areas and on the other hand we are always open to whatever possible products that Crimea may be able to send to Cebu,” she said.

Ukraine also expressed its interest in information technology and the governor said this is one of the areas that the Province and Crimea can work on.

With the governor on her trip to Crimea were Cebu Provincial Board Membr Peter John Calderon, Wilfredo Caminero and Ben Mercede Calderon and businessman Enrison Benedicto, co-chairperson of the One Cebu Council.

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The sisterhood agreement will enable training in Cebu and Crimea’s experiences in production organization, well as the conditions of foreign trade activities.
Restoration of natural resources, environmental security and promotion of organic goods production are also stated in the agreement.

Crimea is an autonomous republic and under the jurisdiction of Ukraine. Its key manufacturing industries are machine building, food, chemical industries and metal building.


Source: US News Las Vegas (Nov. 30, 2010)
By: U.S. News Agency/Asian

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