MANILA, Philippines – Officials from the Department of Tourism (DOT) have confirmed that the Philippines is being considered to host the Miss Universe pageant in 2017.
According to a report from PTV, DOT Secretary Wanda Teo confirmed that she has met with Miss Universe president Paula Shugart and other executives of the organization, who have expressed interest in bringing the pageant to Manila.
In the same report, DOT Undersecretary Kat de Castro said that hosting the pageant can bring many opportunities to the country – creating jobs and increasing revenue – should President Rodrigo Duterte approve the proposal to host the pageant.
"Sinasabi nila that it has been long overdue for the Miss Universe na ganapin dito sa Philippines," she said. "Nagkaroon ng kaunting talks and hopefully, if all goes well, if all becomes approved soon, dito natin gagawin ang Miss Universe [on] January 29."
(They are saying that it has been long overdue for the Miss Universe pageant to be held in the Philippines. There were some talks and hopefully, if it all goes well, if all becomes approved soon, we will have the Miss Universe pageant here on January 29.)
In addition, de Castro said that hosting the pageant will give the country a good image.
"We know that the Miss Universe is one of the prestigious pageants that we have right now in the entire world. Kumbaga kapag kaya natin gawin natin dito sa (In other words, if we can hold it here in the) Philippines, it would show a very good image of the country para sa ibang mga bayan na yung mga ganyang prestihiyosong pageant ay kaya na natin gawin (to the international community that we can hold such a prestigious pageant)," she said.
More than 90 candidates are expected to be part of the competition.
In a previous interview, Miss Universe 2015 Pia Wurtzbach said that given a chance, she would like to crown her successor in the country.
"I am actively campaigning and we all want the pageant to happen here. We want to happen. It hasn't been confirmed yet," Pia said.
In an interview last January with ABS-CBN, Shugart said that she felt it was time for the Philippines to host the pageant once more.
"For years, I've talked about someday having the pageant here. I do know that with Pia right now, the entire worldwide focus is on the Philippines. I think it's a great opportunity. I would love to be able to make it work. We'll see,” she said.
If plans push through, this will be the 3rd time that the Philippines will host the pageant. The country hosted Miss Universe in 1974 where Miss Universe 1973 Margarita Moran passed her crown to Spain's Amparo Muñoz. In 1994, the country hosted the pageant for the second time, where India's Sushmita Sen was crowned by 1993 Miss Universe Dayanara Torres of Puerto Rico. – Rappler.com