The Saipan Mayor’s Office inked a memorandum of understanding yesterday with a China-based creative firm that will handle the Liberation Day festivities this year. This move is seen to boost the CNMI’s image internationally and all of its source tourism markets.
Under the terms of the agreement, Skywalker Communications Group, a leading staging and event organizing firm based in Hong Kong and Beijing, will handle the staging of the 70th Liberation Day festival, with an end to make it even better than before.
The agreement is for a four-year term.
Saipan Mayor David M. Apatang said this is big and completely different from the Liberation Day festivities in the past.
Former representative Chris Leon Guerrero will be the chairman of the Liberation Day committee, he said.
“This is something new for the CNMI. With how Skywalker Communications is committed to give the best possible exposure to our islands in the international arena by tapping different platforms and its creative staging and production of our annual festivities, this perfectly fits our purpose and tradition,” Apatang said.
Skywalker Communications business director Elvis Yu said there wouldn’t be any cost to the Saipan Mayor’s Office as they will provide the funding for that through their firm and sponsorships.
Yu said they are still working on the designs that will include carnivals and new activities. This is an added plus to the community as the past Liberation Day festivities have not seen the carnival in a long time.
“This is a win-win situation for the government, community, and the investors,” he said.
Yu noted that the festival itself will be held at the Garapan Fishing Base and will include traditions of past Liberation festivities such as fireworks, parade, a carnival, booths and activities.
Their proposed target date is from June 27 to Aug. 16.
“We will work to maximize community involvement and emphasize the rich local traditions to ensure the success of this year’s Liberation festivities,” Yu said.
“This is a free marketing and promotion for the islands at no cost to the CNMI government. I am in high spirits that we will be able to reach more markets through the organizations’ planning and staging,” Apatang said.
Yu said that they are willing to do this because of the firm’s 20 years experience with content marketing, public relations and events, celebrity management, brand management, and digital marketing in China.
Some of the firm’s clients are Cartier, Audi, the Song Festival for the 2008 Beijing Games, Shanghai World Expo, Bank of China, and many more.
Yu said they will give weekly updates on their plans so the community is kept in the loop.
Skywalker Communications managing director Hu Bo, accompanied by personal assistant Blaze Yau, said the partnership will bolster promotional efforts and infuse vitality into the islands’ marketing campaign to reach out to bigger markets.
“It can only get better as investment will open up the islands further to better opportunities, catapulting the CNMI to joining the leading tourist destinations in the world by tapping international media and marketing promotions,” Bo said.