Batanes to stay closed for tourists for now, province assessing pandemic: gov


Posted at Nov 08 2020 08:50 AM

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MANILA - Batanes will remain closed to tourists for now as the COVID-19 pandemic persists, its governor said Sunday.

The local government and stakeholders had a meeting 2 weeks ago, according to Governor Marilou Cayco, who earlier said the province would assess the virus situation in Metro Manila and other regions in December.

"Unanimously, ang opinion nila ay 'wag muna po," she told ABS-CBN's TeleRadyo.

(Unanimously, their opinion was to remain closed for now.)

The province has around 1,500 displaced workers and provided small business owners P10,000 cash aid, Cayco said. It applied for P100 million more from state-run Landbank, she added.

Batanes recently incurred some P4.9-million in agricultural damage from severe tropical storm Siony.

Data from the Department of Tourism showed that in 2019, Batanes received 45,085 visitors, mostly domestic travelers. It was slightly higher at 50,461 in 2018.