July 31, 2014

Bacolod-Hong Kong direct flights eyed

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From left: Cebu Pacific president & CEO Lance Gokongwei, newly elected Bacolod City Mayor Monico Puentevella and JG Summit, Inc. president and CEO Frederick Go

By Jerome S. Galunan Jr.

He has yet to assume post as the city executive but mayor-elect Monico Puentevella has started campaigning for more investments in Bacolod.

In his meeting with two of the country’s business tycoons, Puentevella was able to convince Lance Gokongwei and Frederick Go to bring more businesses to Bacolod, including direct international flights from Bacolod to other parts of Asia.

The newly elected city mayor revealed that Gokongwei, president and chief executive officer of Cebu Pacific Air Inc., had initially agreed to open two direct flights from the Bacolod-Silay Airport to Hong Kong every week starting next year, 2014.

“Bacolod needs to have these flights in order to draw foreign investors and tourists into the city. If Iloilo can do it, if Cebu and Davao can do it, so can the City of Bacolod,” Puentevella stressed, calling the move as a “game changer”.

As he cited his campaign promise of promoting tourism and investments in Bacolod should he be elected as mayor, Puentevella said he is looking forward to a “long and steady partnership” with the Gokongweis.

“Hong Kong is just a start. Soon, we will have direct flights to Macau, Singapore and Korea. Tourism in the city will flourish, businesses will grow and we’re merely just scratching the surface,” Puentevella emphasized.

For his part, Go, president and CEO of JG Summit, Inc., also expressed his support to Puentevella, adding that he plans to bring in more jobs and business opportunities into the city in the coming years.

Go, who is also the top executive of Robinsons Land Corporation, is the nephew of Filipino-Chinese business mogul John Gokongwei./WDJ

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