MANILA -- A Boracay resort owner said Wednesday that establishments on the island should not be obliged to put up their own sewage treatment plants because this is the job of water utilities.
Boracay Island Water Company and Boracay Tubi Systems, should be the ones operating such facilities on the island, said Guenter Taus, a Boracay resort owner and president of the European Chamber of Commerce in the Philippines.
"It's very clearly specified that the concessionaire is appointed by government. They should be the ones to build STPs," Taus said citing the Clean Water Act.
Taus was reacting to an order by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources that said Boracay hotel operators should build their own STPs.
An official of the DENR meanwhile insisted on the legality of the order.
Environment Undersecretary Jonas Leones however said that after listening to stakeholders, it decided to revise the requirements on STPs for Boracay establishments.
Leones said only hotels with 40 to 50 rooms would be required to put up their own STP by Oct. 26, while resorts with 39 rooms and below could connect to existing sewer lines.
Hotels with 50 rooms and up will have until Nov. 30 to put up their own STP.
"If they can't comply, they will not be allowed to reopen," Leones said.
The government is aiming for a "soft opening" of Boracay on Oct. 26.