Paoay, Ilocos Norte — The Paoay Lake Golf Course, a renowned 77-hectare, 18-hole facility in Ilocos Norte, is nearing the completion of its extensive rehabilitation, aiming to attract more tourists to this northern Luzon destination. This sports and recreation complex, situated along the scenic Paoay Lake in Barangay Suba, is the province's sole golf course and a key player in the Ilocos Region's leisure offerings.

According to Philippines News Agency, the project was initiated by the provincial government and the DOT in 2018 but faced delays due to the pandemic. Ortega, who spoke at the Kapihan sa Bagong Pilipinas forum in La Union on Tuesday, expressed optimism about the project's progress, noting, "We will see developments later this year." The Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority (TIEZA) has contributed PHP12 million towards the redevelopment efforts. The initiative also involves private investors to develop customized golf packages catering to both leisure and professional players.

Under the current Marcos administration, the DOT aims to position the Philippines as a leading destination in the burgeoning golf tourism market, which is projected to reach over USD 41.87 billion globally by 2030. The Paoay Golf Course has historically attracted numerous international visitors, especially from Korea, Japan, and China. However, the influx waned when chartered flights to Laoag International Airport were discontinued.

Ilocos Norte Governor Matthew Joseph Manotoc highlighted the golf course's significant role in enhancing the local tourism sector, anticipating an increase in both domestic and international visitors throughout the year once the course reopens.

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