Baguio City deemed rival for Congress bid

01/31/2011 - A “dark horse” of sorts emerged as potential competition for Cebu and Cebu City in the bidding for this November's 22nd Philippine Advertising Congress.

Anna Conejero, managing director of Graphic FX Advertising and Design and a point person appointed by Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama to head the city's bid, said they consider Baguio City as their closest competitor to host the lucrative Congress.

She said Baguio City lost its bid to host the event last Nov. 2009 due to bad weather conditions.

Conejero said the Baguio City mayor offered to host dinner for more than 4,000 delegates if they were chosen as host.

“We will never do that. Can you feed 4,000 people? We cannot just feed them with barbecue and puso (rice packed in banana leaves),” Conejero told CEBU DAILY NEWS.

She said what Cebu City can offer is a secure venue with adequate transportation and facilities.

“Transportation wise, air and land, we have. For the conference, we have the Waterfront, the Cebu International Convention Center (CICC), we have the new hotels. But this is nothing new to them. What is new to them is CICC and Radisson (hotel),” she said.

Conejero said Cebu City was given until 12 midnight of February 2 to file their bid.

“What plays a major role (in the bid) is the commitment of the government side,” Conejero said.

She said the city government can provide better security and traffic management for the delegates.

It can also regulate the prices of basic commodities and souvenir items like danggit (dried fish), vegetables and fruits for the duration of the event, she added.

Conejero said the city government is also prepared to offer the South Road Properties (SRP) and the IT park for any related events like nightly dinners and shows which require an open area.

As of yesterday, Conejero said her team is finalizing the requirements for the city's bid to host the event.

She said they were getting the list of restaurants, convention halls and hotel accommodations for more than 4,000 delegates and their respective support teams.

She said she also expects three of the country's biggest TV networks to outdo each other in the coverage of the event.

At the Capitol, the provincial government sent its letter of intent to host the Ad Congress.

Cebu Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia’s executive assistant, Elizabeth Francia, said in a phone interview that the Capitol's bid will be submitted today.

“We will issue our response to the requirements they have sent,” Francia said.

Some of these requirements include the host city's accessibility to transportation, infrastructure, affordability and availability of local suppliers, security systems and local government support. (Cebu Daily News)

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