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For the first time, Iloilo City will host a Filipino-Chinese Trade Expo Jan. 20-27 at the PNB Hall in General Luna Street in time with the celebration of Chinese New Year which falls on Jan. 23, a special non-working holiday.

The grand celebration of Iloilo Chinese New Year is set on Jan. 27 with cultural parade starting at 3pm along Iznart Street, Chinese Food Festival at 4pm also at Iznart Street, cultural program at 5:30pm at Iloilo’s Chinatown which will climax with a world class pyrotechnic and fireworks display.

Mayor Jed Patrick E. Mabilog said the trade fair will gather not only Ilonggo businessmen but also Filipino-Chinese businessmen from Manila, Cebu, Negros and other areas to showcase their local products here.

He added that the week-long business activity is also an opportune time that coincides with Dinagyang Festival which highlights Jan. 20-22 when more visitors are coming to the city.

The city’s celebration of Chinese New Year now on its 10th year is touted as the first and biggest festivity outside of Manila’s Chinatown in Binondo.

Mabilog stressed the event highlights the rich cultural heritage and tradition of Ilonggo-Chinese community and an active public-private partnership in worthy initiatives and developmental endeavors.

The Ilonggo-Chinese community always serves a dynamic and reliable partner of the City Government in providing business and employment opportunities, classroom building activities, feeding programs, anti-dengue prevention campaign, holiday gift-giving to indigents, assistance to peace and order improvement, maintenance of volunteer fire brigades and assistance during disasters and calamities.