- Pres. Rodrigo Duterte approves plans to host Miss Universe 2017 pageant in the Philippines
- As revealed by the DOT secretary Wanda Teo, the national executive has earlier approved the plan in principle
- Reigning Miss Universe Pia Wurtzbach is set to talk with the DOT and to Pres. Duterte
- Philippines last hosted the prestigious pageant in 1994
“We are ready to seize the moment,” said the newly-appointed Department of Tourism (DOT) secretary Wanda Teo as she disclosed that President Rodrigo Duterte has approved in principle the proposal for the Philippines to host the next Miss Universe pageant.
In a statement, Teo, said that the President has agreed with her plans to bring back the global event to the country, which she said will serve as a big boost to the local tourism industry, an article published by ABS-CBN News stated.
In addition, Teo said that if the prestigious beauty tilt be held in the country, she will request to have it moved to May instead of January to give way to other grand celebrations scheduled at the start of the year, specifically the Chinese New Year and the Sinulog Festival.
Meanwhile, reigning Miss Universe Pia Wurtzbach, who earlier expressed excitement over the plan, is set to return to Manila to further campaign the staging of the pageant in the Philippines.
As confirmed by the tourism department, Wurtzbach will first meet with the DOT secretary prior to her courtesy call with the President.
With regards to sponsorship, Teo said that she will begin talking with possible sponsors once it is confirmed that the Philippines is the next host country as she added that the government will need to raise a budget of $12 million (around P560 million) for the event.
If the plan materializes, the DOT secretary revealed that segments of the month-long beauty pageant will be held in Palawan, Boracay and Cebu in an effort to showcase to the world not just Manila but other tourist spots as well.
The next attempt for the Philippines to bag the crown lies in the hands of Maxine Medina, a 25-year-old interior designer who has been modelling since 2008.
The Philippines last hosted the Miss Universe pageant in 1994.