Penghu prepares for finals of international beauty pageant

Penghu County welcomed Sept. 19 competitors from 40 countries and territories for the Global Charity Queen finals

Global Charity Queen contestants. (By Central News Agency)

Taiwan’s outlying Penghu County welcomed Sept. 19 competitors from 40 countries and territories for the finals of a beauty pageant designed to promote the archipelago’s tourism resources and the 2018 World Congress of the Most Beautiful Bays in the World Club.
 
Set for Sept. 23, the Global Charity Queen is sponsored by the Penghu County Government. In addition to the title and a cash prize, the winner will receive a one-year contract to serve as an official ambassador for the world congress, which will be staged in the county in October next year.
 
Speaking at a welcoming ceremony for participants, Penghu County Magistrate Chen Kuang-fu invited contestants to explore the beauty of the archipelago and share their experiences after returning home.
 
Chen also expressed his hope that the pageant will increase the county’s international visibility ahead of the congress. The 2018 event will feature representatives from more than 80 countries and territories, presenting a great opportunity to showcase Penghu’s cultural and natural assets on the world stage, he said.
 
The finals of the Global Charity Queen will feature 40 contestants from countries and territories such as Brazil, Greece, Mexico, Paraguay and Uganda. Besides the overall prize, judges will award a separate title to the participant who excels in the talent portion of the event.
 
Contestants are also scheduled to take part in a variety of activities before the finals, including a parade and opening ceremony Sept. 21 as well as a rock concert and fireworks show Sept. 22.
 
Located in the middle of the Taiwan Strait, Penghu comprises nearly 100 islets dotted over 127 square kilometers. Almost 1.1 million tourists visited the county in 2016, up about 100,000 year on year, according to the local government.
 
Penghu is the sole Taiwan member of the Most Beautiful Bays in the World Club, a UNESCO-endorsed grouping of 40 bays from 25 countries and territories committed to “saving the natural heritage of the bay, preserving its identity, respecting the way of life and the traditions of those that inhabit the area whilst ensuring economic development compatible with these commitments.”