Speech by President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. at the At the Philippine International Dive Expo (PHIDEX) 2024 Opening Ceremony (Delivered by Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Christina G. Frasco)

Event Philippine International Dive Expo
Location World Trade Center, Pasay City

It is my pleasure to kickstart the fourth edition of the Philippine International Dive Expo, organized by the Department of Tourism.

With the theme “Heart of Asia’s Diving: Collaboration for the Ocean Community,” this expo stands as a testament to our unwavering commitment to promote the Philippines as a premier diving destination on the global stage.

Across the world’s oceans, there is a patch of sea that is home to a significant portion of the world’s marine species called the Coral Triangle.

Within this Coral Triangle is the Philippines, which is blessed with an abundance of marine life and a rich diversity of marine species.

Indeed, as among the 17 mega biodiverse countries in the world, our waters are teeming with life, making it a haven for divers and marine enthusiasts alike.

We Filipinos are blessed and grateful to be entrusted with the guardianship of this precious natural treasure.

With each ebb and flow of the tide, our waters bid to be seen with wonder and, of course, to be taken care of.

I am thus delighted to join you here at PHIDEX, which serves as a platform for us to showcase the beauty of our diving destinations.

Here, we will highlight the beauty of our underwater world and our dedication to sustainable tourism through marine life protection and conservation efforts.

I would also like to emphasize that one of the key objectives of this expo is to strengthen collaboration between local and international stakeholders.

Through programs such as the [Dive] Travel Exchange Business-to-Business meetings, we aim to facilitate meaningful partnerships that will enhance the Philippine dive industry and drive economic growth.

The Dive Conference and Seminars offer a valuable opportunity for knowledge exchange, as we learn from international experts about best dive practices and innovative approaches to ocean conservation.

We look forward to showcasing new dive destinations and inviting potential investors to explore business opportunities in our thriving dive tourism sector.
Likewise, post-familiarization tours will allow international dive tour operators to experience firsthand the beauty of our top and emerging dive destinations.

As we gather here today, let us reiterate our shared commitment to the sustainable development of our oceans and marine resources.

We cannot emphasize enough the importance of the private sector participation in ensuring that the Philippines remains a premier destination for diving enthusiasts and professionals from around the globe.

Through strategic investments in infrastructure and sustainable tourism initiatives, the government will continue to elevate our country’s standing
as a hotspot of biodiversity and underwater adventure.

Each dive taken, each coral reef explored, and each aquatic life discovered is a chance to deepen our connection with our environment and reaffirm our duty to its preservation.

With it also comes the opportunity to transform the lives of the many people and communities living along our coastal waters.

Ladies and gentlemen, the time to dive into adventure has arrived. But let us do so with a profound respect for the delicate ecosystems that sustain life beneath the waves.

Together, let us be united in our efforts to take care of the pristine waters that cradle the Bagong Pilipinas that we are determined to build.

Thank you and I wish this expo great success.