Foreign Affairs Undersecretary Laura del Rosario, head of the National Organizing Council for APEC, said among those selected were: Metro Manila, Clark, Tagaytay, Legazpi, Iloilo, Boracay, Cebu and Davao.
Del Rosario said the shortlisted sites are “under serious considerations” by the organizers but will have to go through another round of evaluation every six months before 2015 to ensure its readiness to host the meetings.
“The cities that were reviewed have passed the initial requirements based on certain criteria - security, cleanliness, and accessibility,” Del Rosario told reporters in an interview.
Criteria for selection of venues also include facilities and infrastructure, power and water conditions, and medical services availability, Del Rosario said.
The APEC Summit, which would include leaders from the United States, Japan and China, will be held in the country in November 2015.
During the Philippine hosting, Del Rosario said a number of preparatory meetings in the ministerial and senior official levels will be held throughout the year in the run up to the summit.
The APEC leaders’ meeting, said to be the biggest and most high profile annual gathering of world leaders from 21-member economies, will be hosted by President Benigno S. Aquino III before he ends his term in June 2016.
Preparations including security and logistical requirements are being laid out as early as this year, Del Rosario said.
The APEC meetings, she said, would be a good opportunity for the Philippines to flaunt its prime cities and popular tourist destinations, like the world-famed Boracay and the Mayon Volcano in Legazpi, Albay.
It is also a chance for the country to showcase the diversity of Philippine regions, culture, arts and cuisine, Del Rosario said, adding the country’s hosting of the summit will pave the way for infrastructure improvements across the Philippines and begin the trend for “Livable Cities.”
“We’re trying to make cities live up and become livable cities because one of the agenda items of APEC is to create sustainable and livable cities,” she said. -- Michaela del Callar/RSJ, GMA News