The House of Representatives on Monday, Sept. 18 approved the third and final reading of a bill declaring Pampanga as the Christmas Capital of the country.
“The Christmas season here in the Philippines is made extra special every year by the Kapampangans who take pride in their famous and vibrant tradition of lantern-making,” Speaker Ferdinand Martin G. Romualdez said.
The chamber, consisting of 250 lawmakers, unanimously approved House Bill (HB) No. 6933.
According to Pampanga 3rd District Rep. Aurelio "Dong" D. Gonzales, Jr., the Kapampangan's "excellent craftsmanship" to honor the birth of Jesus Christ contributed to the promotion of the province as a cultural tourism destination.
“Their excellent craftsmanship to honor the birth of Jesus Christ surely contributed to the robustness of the local economy and the promotion of the province as a cultural tourism destination," he said in a press release.
"It is only fitting that we formalize Pampanga’s legacy as the Christmas Capital of the Philippines now, as it continues to brighten the season of giving each year," he added.
Gonzales furthered that the proposed law would give more income and job opportunities to the kabalen (fellow Kapampangans) and residents of neighboring areas as the bill aims to boost its local economy.
The proposed law also directs the Department of Tourism (DOT) “to include and feature” the province as the country’s Christmas capital “in its national and regional promotion programs” as stated in Section 2 of the written bill.