About the Conference
|The Twelfth Session of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS COP12) is being held in Manila, the Philippines, from 23 to 28 October 2017 – the first time that the COP will ever have been held in Asia. The COP will be preceded by a High Level Panel (22 October) which... Read more >>
About the Venue
|The Philippine International Convention Center (PICC) made history as Asia's first international convention center, setting a trend that led other countries to build their own. Designed by Leandro V. Locsin, a Filipino National Artist in Architecture, the PICC Complex formally opened on September 5, 1976 to host the World Bank's...Read more >>
|The Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS) is an intergovernmental treaty under the aegis of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) that provides the global platform for the conservation and sustainable use of migratory animals and their habitats... Read more >>|
Delegates from the following countries travelling with an ordinary passport need a visa to enter
Applying for a Philippine visa will require that the applicant's passport be valid for six months
beyond the applicant’s date of departure from the Philippines. The passport must have one blank visa page.
Nationals from countries not listed above who are traveling to the Philippines for business and tourism purposes are allowed to enter the Philippines without visas for a stay not exceeding thirty (30) days, provided they hold valid tickets for their return journey to port of origin or next port of destination and their passports valid for a period of at least six (6) months beyond the contemplated period of stay.
Beginning 01 January 2017, Philippine immigration authorities will not allow entry into Philippine airports and seaports of foreign nationals holding non-machine readable passports.
For further inquiries and up to date information, please click on the following link; https://www.dfa.gov.ph/guidelines-requirements
However, on the special occasion of COP12, the Philippines will provide visas on arrival for participants from countries in the list above. Participants from these countries are requested to present an invitation letter to the authorities in Manila in advance of their arrival. The Secretariat will issue such letters upon request.
Local Philippine staff will have a desk at the airport to assist with visas on arrival.
Hotel rooms for delegates:
The delegates will make their own reservation by guaranteeing their reservation with their own credit card and paying directly to the hotel. Kindly refer to the cancellation conditions.
CMS COP12 Recommended Hotels
Click HERE for the list of recommended hotels for the CMS COP12. When booking a hotel room, use the email address provided for each of the hotel and indicate that you are a participant of CMS COP12 to take advantage of the discounted rates.
Transportation Arrangement for CMS COP12 Participants
A. Airport Terminals to designated Hotels – October 21 to 22 , 2017
There will be shuttle busses stationed at NAIA Terminals 1, 2 &3 on October 21 and Oct. 22 to ferry arriving CMS COP12 delegates from the airport to the following designated hotels for the CMS COP12:
Busses stationed at the Airport terminals will depart every hour (on the hour) starting at 7am until 6pm.
Participants may also opt to:
- It is more advisable though, to avail of the airport coupon taxi or Grab/Uber.
There will be a CMS COP 12 information desk in the terminals to assist the arriving delegates (visa assistance will also be available at the special lane for CMS COP12).
B. Hotels to Conference Venue (PICC) and Vice-versa
Shuttle service will leave the designated hotels to PICC at 7:00 am, 8:00 am, and 9:00 am from October 22 to October 26, 2017, and on 28 October 2017;
Shuttle service will leave the PICC to designated hotels as per the following schedule: 5.00pm; 5.30pm; 6.00pm; 6.30pm; and 7: 00pm during the same days. Transport service may be extended beyond the designated time as needed.
Participants billeted in other nearby hotels may, at their own convenience avail of the group transport service.
C. Group transport service
Group transport service will be provided for the field trips on October 27, 2017 and for the birdwatching trips to the Las Piñas-Paranaque Critical Habitat and Ecotourism Area.
Schedule of transport service for returning delegates on the 28th and 29th October 2017 shall be made available at the lobby of designated hotels and at the conference venue.
Click HERE for the required and recommended vaccinations.
Travel and Medical Insurance
All participants traveling is recommended to have valid travel and medical insurance covering the period of stay in the Philippines.
The CMS Secretariat disclaims all responsibility for medical, accident and travel insurance, for compensation for death or disability, for loss of or damage to personal property and for any other loss that may be incurred during travel time or the period of participation. In this context, it is strongly recommended that participants secure prior to departure an international insurance for the period of participation.
Click HERE to download meeting documents
The Philippines (Filipino: Pilipinas) is an archipelago in South-East Asia of more than seven thousand islands located in the western Pacific Ocean at the very eastern edge of Asia. One of the 17 megadiverse countries in the world, the Philippine islands which is isolated hundreds of miles by tropical seas from the Asian landmass, harbors diverse and unique terrestrial species with about fifty percent endemism. Likewise, its extensive maritime waters located at the apex of the Coral Triangle, supports rich marine life and known as the center of marine shorefish diversity. Situated at the equator and in the middle of migration pathways, the Philippines is an important foraging and breeding habitats of whales and dolphins, marine turtles, sharks, kites and rays, migratory shorebirds and forest birds.
The country's rich biodiversity is one of the main tourist attractions with its beaches along the world’s longest coastlines, mountains, rainforests, islands and diving spots among the most popular tourist destinations.
Since Spanish colonial times, the country has been Asia's largest Catholic country. Over a hundred ethnic groups, a mixture of foreign influences and a fusion of culture and arts have enhanced the uniqueness of the Filipino identity and the wonder that is the Philippines.
As of 2015, the Philippines has a population estimated at 100 million and growing rapidly. From its long history of Western influence, 377 years by the Spaniards and 49 years by the Americans, its people have evolved as a unique blend of East and West in both appearance and culture.
The climate is tropical, with March to May (summer) being the hottest months. The rainy season starts in June and extends through October with strong typhoons possible. The coolest months are from November to February, with mid-January to end of February considered the best for cooler and dryer weather.
Ninoy Aquino International Airport is the gateway to Manila and it is the largest airport in the Philippines. Manila Airport (MNL) is composed of 4 active terminals. They are all referenced as NAIA.
Terminal 1: NAIA Terminal – All International flights except Philippine Airlines, PAL Express, Cebu Pacific, AirAsia Zest, Tigerair Philippines, All Nippon Airways, Cathay Pacific, Delta Air Lines, KLM, Emirates, and Singapore Airlines.
Terminal 2: Centennial Terminal - All Philippine Airlines flights only, and it is divided into two wings: North wing for International Flights, South wing for Domestic Flights.
Terminal 3: NAIA International Terminal - International flights not served at Terminal 1. Is the newest and biggest terminal.
Domestic Terminal: All domestic flights other than Philippine Airline
Arriving participants may approach the CMS COP12 information desk for assistance stationed at terminals 1, 2, and 3.
Alternatively, participants may take a taxi. Taxi service is available to NAIA from all points of Metro Manila. Take only official, metered or pre-booked taxis. Do not accept rides from people that approach you in the terminal. Taxis charge around 200 Pesos (4 USD) to central Manila hotels. It will take about 20 minutes to one hour for the trip, depending on traffic. Many of the major hotels run cars which you can book in advance, the cost is around 750-1000 Pesos (15 - 20 USD).
Click HERE for the vicinity map
The Philippines is the world’s second largest archipelago with over 7,000 islands. The natural resource base of the country for ecotourism consists of an outstanding and diverse array of wetlands, mountains, volcanoes, rugged cliffs, seascapes, coasts, beaches, lakes, forests, caves, fields, and a rich variety of plants and animals.
The Philippines ranks 5th worldwide in terms of number of endemic animals; it also ranks 25th in terms of plant richness. As a “megadiversity” country, the Philippines offers one of the best destinations for ecotourism in Asia and the ASEAN region. Mountains, volcanoes, and forests in the country range from accessible forested areas in Luzon and in Mindanao. Coastal and marine attractions in the Philippines are known internationally, and many are now considered world-class ecotourism destinations. Coastal-based ecotourism products include SCUBA diving, snorkeling, sea kayaking, and marine mammal viewing. Beach-based products are already famous, with Batangas, Cebu, and Palawan as the core of beach-based ecotourism. Lakes and wetlands in the Philippines are important feeding and wintering grounds for migratory birds from Mainland Asia and Australia, and hence provide ecotourism products like bird-watching, research, and cultural activities. River running is an increasingly important activity in many major rivers in the country. Caves are also found throughout the country and are even popular among foreign and local tourists.
Hans Cristian Andersen’s The Little Mermaid tells the whole world about a tale of unrequited love and tragedy, which prompted the contemporary artists and storytellers to create their own version of the tale, making the narrative a classic.
While the mermaid from the story is just fiction, there are species that are possibly facing a relatively similar wretched ending on their life here on earth. These creatures are the dugongs, a type of herbivore mammal that eats seagrass, whose taxonomical order, Sirenia, was inspired by Hans Cristian Andersen’s tale.
“I once saw a shark eating a dugong,” recalled “Oceania” (not his real name), a foreign male surfer in his 60s, who chose to live near the Amihan Surfing Beach in Brgy. Dahican, Mati City, Davao Oriental.“I once saw a shark eating a dugong,” recalled “Oceania” (not his real name), a foreign male surfer in his 60s, who chose to live near the Amihan Surfing Beach in Brgy. Dahican, Mati City, Davao Oriental.
Natural causes such as this one might be pointed out as one of the reasons for the declining number of dugongs near the said beach, which is within the bounds of the Pujada Bay Protected Seascape and Landscape. But the food chain rationale is just a tip of the iceberg. Read more >>
THE TURTLE ISLANDS, a major nesting site of marine turtles in the ASEAN region and the world, is located in the southwestern tip of the Philippines and is part of the Sulu Archipelago. It is at the border of the international treaty limits separating the Philippines from Malaysia.
On May 31, 1996, the two countries signed a historic bilateral agreement establishing the Turtle Islands Heritage Protected Area (TIHPA), the first transboundary protected area for marine turtles in the world. TIHPA spans from the Philippines to Malaysia and its management is shared by both countries.
The creation of TIHPA hopes to guarantee conservation of habitats and the continued existence of the marine turtles and their nesting sites in the Turtle Islands. The marine turtle is a migratory species and is listed in Appendix I of the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS).
In 1999, the Turtle Islands municipality and its surrounding waters were declared a Wildlife Sanctuary by virtue of Presidential Proclamation 171 issued by former President Joseph Estrada, pursuant to Republic Act 7586 or the National Integrated Protected Areas System (NIPAS) Act of 1992, and was renamed as Turtle Islands Wildlife Sanctuary (TIWS). Read more >>