Nearly 850,000 Korean holidaymakers visit Vietnam in April


Nearly 847,000 people from the Republic of Korea (RoK) visited Vietnam in April, accounting for 31.1% of the total 2,720,557 tourists from the country to Southeast Asian countries, the RoK Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport hast reported. With many prominent destinations such as Da Nang, Nha Trang, Phu Quoc and Da Lat, Vietnam has risen to become the top destination in Southeast Asia for Korean holidaymakers. The number of tourists from Seoul to Da Nang, Nha Trang and Phu Quoc in April were reported at 173, 865, 141,130 and 53,680 passengers, respectively.

Source: Vietnam News Agency

Cebu City eyes investors for creative district

CEBU CITY: The local government here is seeking investors to develop the Cebu City Creative District, a 150-hectare project within the North Reclamation.

Cebu City Vice Mayor Raymond Alvin Garcia, the acting city mayor, pitched the project to Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Alfredo Pascual last week for the local government unit (LGU) to attract foreign and local partners to construct the new business district.

‘Most of it is owned by the city government, but of course, the surrounding area is privately owned. If they want to join, they can do so, as long as they follow our guidelines for the area,’ Garcia said.

‘In terms of the financial resource, it’s something we do not have yet. So we are planning to invite investors, to whatever scheme, be it PPP (public-private partnership), they can lease our property whatever its, and hopefully we ca sustain their investments as a result of doing some infrastructure in the Creative District,’ Garcia added.

Cebu City Planning and Development Office
Assistant Department head Ann Marie Cuizon said the Creative District would need roughly PHP10 billion for basic infrastructure, which excludes investments of potential locators.

Creative industries are activities that deal with creativity, culture, economics and technology, using creativity and intellectual property as primary inputs.

In her presentation, Cuizon said the Cebu City Creative District will host activities such as arts, cultural, culinary, design and architecture, fashion, music and performing arts, film production, publishing, advertising, and digital arts.

To establish the Creative District, Cuizon said the LGU pushes for the development of a mechanism for the academe and the industry to address skills gap in the creative industries.

The LGU also eyes cooperation deals with creative industries-related associations, development of a competitive incentives package, creation of a venture capital fund for the industry, development of an industry-focused and market-specific promotions plan, and
the establishment of a Cebu Creative Entertainment Council.

Cuizon said the city government aims to roll out the development in the Creative District in the next 10 years.

The plan is a collaboration of the Cebu City LGU and the University of San Carlos – School of Architecture, Fine Arts, and Design.

In 2019, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) designated Cebu City as “Creativity City of Design” along with 65 others from around the world.

The Unesco says the ‘member cities that form part of the Network come from all continents and regions with different income levels and populations,’ working to place creativity and the creative economy at the core of urban developments to make cities safe, resilient, inclusive and sustainable.

Source: Philippines News Agency

ITLOS cites 2016 arbitral ruling in advisory opinion on climate change

MANILA: The International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS) has issued its long-awaited advisory opinion on climate change and agreed that greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) constitute marine pollution.

The global ocean court on May 21 determined that the 169 states parties to the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) have the ‘specific obligations’ to prevent, reduce and control marine pollution from anthropogenic GHG emissions.

In key parts of the advisory opinion, ITLOS cited as authoritative the Arbitral Tribunal’s 2016 ruling on the South China Sea (SCS).

At least 26 states or groups of states also referenced to the award as legal authority in their respective oral and written statements during the ITLOS proceedings.

‘This bolsters and reinforces the legitimacy of the final and binding 2016 Arbitration Award, and its unassailable status as part of the corpus of international law. The Philippines therefore takes this opportunity to reiterate its continuing call for full compliance
with the Award,’ the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said in a statement dated May 25.

The ITLOS highlighted the obligation of states to conduct environmental impact assessments to ensure activities do not harm the marine environment as it referenced to the South China Sea ruling’s explanation of ‘general obligation.’

The 2016 Arbitral Award stated that ‘the corpus of international law relating to the environment, which informs the content of the general obligation in (UNCLOS) Article 192, requires that States ensure that activities within their jurisdiction and control respect the environment of other States or of areas beyond national control.”.

‘Thus, States have a positive ‘duty to prevent, or at least mitigate’ significant harm to the environment when pursuing large-scale construction activities,’ it further read.

READ: PH backs move to interpret UNCLOS for climate protection

The DFA said the Philippines will study the ITLOS advisory opinion and its implications for the country and other states
parties to UNCLOS, particularly on the duty to protect and preserve the marine environment in the context of greenhouse gas emissions, climate change impacts, and ocean acidification.

‘The Philippines recognizes that advisory opinions are significant contributions to the clarification and development of international law,’ it said.

‘The Philippines reiterates the rule of law ensures equity in the global commons and a fair, just, and peaceful multilateral world order,’ it added.

The Philippines, as a State Party to UNCLOS, participated in the proceedings by delivering an oral statement during the public hearing on Sept. 19, 2023.

The case was brought by the Commission of Small Island States on Climate Change and International Law (COSIS) last December 2022, asking the UN court to determine the specific duties of states parties to the UNCLOS in preventing the pollution of the marine environment caused by climate change through the accumulation of anthropogenic GHG.

Source: Philippines News Agency

ROTC Games fosters unity, discipline, loyalty

BACOLOD CITY: Almost 2,000 student-athletes are competing in the Philippine Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) Games 2024 Visayas Regional Qualifying Leg that kicked off at Panaad Park and Stadium here Sunday.

Hosted by Bacolod, together with the neighboring cities of Talisay and Victorias, the weeklong sports competition, themed ‘Husay ng ROTC, Husay ng Kabataan’ gathers participants from Western Visayas (Region 6), Central Visayas (Region 7) and Eastern Visayas (Region 8).

In his speech, Senator Francis Tolentino, honorary chairperson of the Games’ Executive Organizing Committee, underscored the importance of the ROTC Games in fostering a sense of unity, discipline and loyalty to the nation.

The ROTC Games is ‘a modern manifestation of the essence’ of revolutionary leader Andres Bonifacio’s message to the youth as the founder of the Katipunan.

‘Through this, our cadets are not only honing their physical abilities but also fostering a sense of unity, discipline and loyalty to the nation – values tha
t Bonifacio held dearly,’ he said.

Student-athletes will see action in 14 events — arnis, athletics, boxing, chess, e-sports, sepak takraw, taekwondo, table tennis, volleyball, basketball, target shooting, raiders competition, swimming and Miss ROTC pageant — in the Games organized by the Department of National Defense, Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) and the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) for the second year.

Of the 1,938 total participants, 1,374 are from Western Visayas; 402, from Central Visayas; and 162 from Eastern Visayas.

In the ROTC Games’ maiden edition last year, the Visayas leg, hosted by Iloilo City, gathered about 700 student-athletes only.

Defense Undersecretary Pablo Lorenzo told the athletes to look beyond medals and victories and not lose sight of the true objectives of the Games, which are to promote the ROTC program, discover new talents, and instill a deeper sense of nationalism and sportsmanship.

‘This year’s ROTC Games are made more exciting by the doubling of events, f
rom seven to 14. We now have more participants and a broader platform for our talented cadets to shine,’ he said.

PSC Chair Richard Bachmann, whose message was delivered by Commissioner Bong Coo, said he is ‘excited to see more legacies of ROTC Games being contributed to the success of Philippine sports.’

‘An inspired youth is a vital force for continuing the accomplishment of the Bagong Pilipinas (New Philippines) governance. The ROTC Games helps instill discipline and commitment on the youth, in and out of the sporting venue,’ he added.

Norberto Mangulabnan, president of host CHED institution Carlos Hilado Memorial State University, said the ROTC Games ‘serves as a platform to highlight the ROTC program, not just as a military training but as a pathway to patriotism and holistic youth development.’

‘The Games emphasizes sportsmanship, discipline, teamwork and excellence, instilling values that go beyond the athletic field and contribute to the overall growth of the participants,’ he said.

Source: Phil
ippines News Agency

Aghon slightly intensifies, makes 8th landfall in Lucena

MANILA: The Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) on Sunday issued heavy rainfall warning over Romblon and Oriental Mindoro as Tropical Storm Aghon slight intensified while meandering over Sariaya, Quezon.

In its 11 a.m. bulletin, the weather Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said Aghon has maximum sustained winds of 75 kph (kilometer per hour) near the center and gustiness of up to 125 kph while moving northwestward at 10 kph.

In a press conference, PAGASA weather forecaster Benison Estareja said Aghon made its eighth landfall in Lucena City, Quezon Sunday morning.

”Yung pagbagal ng kilos nito ay mag recurve mamayang gabi at lilihis ng direksyon hilagang silangan (The slowing down of its movement will recurve tonight and deviate to the northeast direction),’ Estareja said.

Estareja said in the next 12 hours, Aghon will move across the landmass of mainland Calabarzon and Polillo Islands and the tropical st
orm is forecast to be over the waters off the east coast of Quezon or Aurora on Sunday evening or Monday early morning.

He said Aghon is forecast to reach severe tropical storm category on Monday and typhoon category by Tuesday before exiting the Philippine Area of Responsibility northeast of Northern Luzon on Wednesday.

He said Aghon brought moderate to heavy rains over Quezon province, particularly in Bolanay, Tayabas, Alabat and Infanta, and light to moderate rains in Tanay, Rizal; Caisguran, Aurora; Science Garden in Quezon City; Tanauan, Batangas; Romblon; and Calapan, Oriental Mindoro.

Light to moderate to occasionally heavy rains are expected in Camarines Norte, Camarines Sur, Albay, Catanduanes, Sorsogon, Masbate, Marinduque and Northern Samar in the next 12 hours.

Tropical Cyclone Wind Signal (TCWS) No. 2 is hoisted over northern and central portions of Quezon (Alabat, Perez, Quezon, Gumaca, Lopez, Macalelon, General Luna, Unisan, Pitogo, Plaridel, Agdangan, Padre Burgos, Atimonan, Mauban, Real,
General Nakar, Infanta, Sampaloc, Pagbilao, Calauag, Lucban, City of Tayabas, Lucena City, Tiaong, Candelaria, Sariaya, Dolores, San Antonio) including Polillo Islands; Laguna; the eastern portion of Batangas (City of Tanauan, San Jose, Lipa City, Mataasnakahoy, Balete, Malvar, Santo Tomas, Cuenca, San Pascual, Batangas City, Ibaan, Padre Garcia, Rosario, San Juan, Taysan, Lobo); and the eastern portion of Rizal (Jala-Jala, Pililla, Tanay, Cardona, Binangonan, Morong, Baras).

Metro Manila remains under TCWS No. 1 along with the southeastern portion of Isabela (Palanan, Dinapigue); the southern portion of Quirino (Maddela, Nagtipunan); the southern portion of Nueva Vizcaya (Alfonso Castaneda, Dupax del Sur, Dupax del Norte); the eastern and southern portions of Nueva Ecija (General Tinio, Gabaldon, Bongabon, Pantabangan, Rizal, General Mamerto Natividad, Laur, Palayan City, PeƱaranda, San Leonardo, City of Gapan, Cabanatuan City, Santa Rosa, San Isidro, Cabiao, San Antonio, Jaen, Zaragoza, Aliaga, Talavera, L
lanera); the southern portion of Bataan (Orani, Samal, City of Balanga, Abucay, Pilar, Orion, Limay, Mariveles, Bagac); Aurora; the eastern portion of Pampanga (Candaba, San Luis, San Simon, Apalit, Santa Ana, Arayat, Mexico, Santa Rita, Guagua, Sasmuan, Macabebe, Masantol, Santo Tomas, Minalin, City of San Fernando, Bacolor, Lubao); Bulacan; the rest of Quezon, Rizal, Cavite and Batangas; the northern and central portions of Oriental Mindoro (Pinamalayan, Pola, Naujan, Victoria, Socorro, City of Calapan, Bansud, Gloria, Baco, San Teodoro, Puerto Galera, Bongabong); Marinduque: the extreme northern portion of Romblon (Concepcion, Corcuera, Banton); Camarines Norte; and Camarines Sur.

PAGASA said minimal to moderate risk of storm surge is expected over the exposed and low-lying coastal areas of Cagayan, Isabela, Aurora, Central Luzon, Metro Manila, Calabarzon, Mindoro Provinces, Marinduque, Romblon, Camarines Norte, Camarines Sur, Albay (west coast), Burias Island, mainland Masbate (northwest coast), and Akla
n in the next 24 hours.

Source: Philippines News Agency

Aghon intensifies into severe tropical storm; Quezon under TCWS No. 3

MANILA: Aghon, the country’s first tropical cyclone this year, has intensified into a several tropical storm, the state weather bureau said Sunday.

In its 5 p.m. bulletin, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said Aghon was spotted over the coastal waters of Mauban, Quezon with maximum sustained winds of 95 kph (kilometer per hour) and gustiness of up to 130 kph.

Tropical Cyclone Wind Signal (TCWS) No. 3 was hoisted over eastern section of Quezon ((Infanta, Real, Mauban), including Polillo Islands (Panukulan, Burdeos, Patnanungan, and Polillo).

Areas under TCWS No. 2 are Aurora; the northern and central portions of Quezon (Alabat, Perez, Quezon, Gumaca, Lopez, Macalelon, General Luna, Unisan, Pitogo, Plaridel, Agdangan, Padre Burgos, Atimonan, General Nakar, Sampaloc, Pagbilao, Calauag, Lucban, City of Tayabas, Lucena City, Tiaong, Candelaria, Sariaya, Dolores, San Antonio, Jomalig); Laguna; the eastern portion of Batangas (City of Tanauan, San Jose, Lip
a City, Mataasnakahoy, Balete, Malvar, Santo Tomas, Cuenca, San Pascual, Batangas City, Ibaan, Padre Garcia, Rosario, San Juan, Taysan, Lobo); the eastern and central portions of Rizal (Jala-Jala, Pililla, Tanay, Cardona, Binangonan, Morong, Baras, Rodriguez, City of Antipolo, Teresa); and the northern portion of Camarines Norte (Santa Elena, Capalonga).

The eastern portion of Isabela (Divilacan, San Mariano, San Guillermo, Jones, Echague, San Agustin, Ilagan City, Benito Soliven, City of Cauayan, Maconacon, Angadanan, Naguilian, Palanan, Dinapigue); the eastern portion of Quirino (Maddela, Nagtipunan, Aglipay); the southern portion of Nueva Vizcaya (Alfonso Castaneda, Dupax del Sur, Dupax del Norte); the eastern and southern portions of Nueva Ecija (General Tinio, Gabaldon, Bongabon, Pantabangan, Rizal, General Mamerto Natividad, Laur, Palayan City, PeƱaranda, San Leonardo, City of Gapan, Cabanatuan City, Santa Rosa, San Isidro, Cabiao, San Antonio, Jaen, Zaragoza, Aliaga, Talavera, Llanera); the southern p
ortion of Bataan (Orani, Samal, City of Balanga, Abucay, Pilar, Orion, Limay, Mariveles, Bagac); the eastern portion of Pampanga (Candaba, San Luis, San Simon, Apalit, Santa Ana, Arayat, Mexico, Santa Rita, Guagua, Sasmuan, Macabebe, Masantol, Santo Tomas, Minalin, City of San Fernando, Bacolor, Lubao); Bulacan; Metro Manila; the rest of Quezon, Rizal and Batangas; the northern and central portions of Oriental Mindoro (Pinamalayan, Pola, Naujan, Victoria, Socorro, City of Calapan, Bansud, Gloria, Baco, San Teodoro, Puerto Galera, Bongabong); Marinduque; the extreme northern portion of Romblon (Concepcion, Corcuera, Banton); the rest of Camarines Norte; and Camarines Sur are under TCWS No. 1.

A gale warning remains hoisted over the coastal waters of Aurora, Quezon, and Marinduque, and the southern coastal waters of Batangas, and the northern coastal waters of Camarines Norte.

PAGASA said Aghon will continue to move northeastward towards Polillo Islands.

‘The possibility of intensifying into a typhoon while
over the sea east of Quezon is not ruled out,’ it added.

Source: Philippines News Agency