On February 3rd, Indonesia announced several tourism recovery strategies on the sidelines of the ASEAN Tourism Forum (ATF) 2023, which took place from February 2 to 5 in Yogyakarta. The Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy/Agency of Tourism and Creative Economy presented a number of efforts and policies taken to accelerate the post-pandemic recovery of the tourism and creative economy sector in Indonesia.
Raden Wisnu Sindhutrisno, director of tourism marketing Asia Pacific at Indonesia’s Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy said in the ASEAN NTO’s Media Briefing at the ASEAN Tourism Forum that the Indonesian tourism sector is gradually making its recovery in line with the on-going vaccination campaign. Tourism and Creative Economy business owners have also re-gained trust from travelers thanks to the CHSE certification program.
“While we are focused on increasing the number of visitors, we also want quality visitors – tourists who will spend more and stay longer in this country,” Wisnu said. He noted that his ministry has designed specific strategies and action plans to achieve this. The domestic product of tourism and creative economy has shown a positive result through the #BeliKreatifLokal campaign, a follow-up to the Proud of Indonesian Product National Movement or Gerakan Nasional Bangga Buatan Indonesia.
Tourism recovery can’t be instant. It takes time, but we have to continue the effort.Wisnu Sindhutrisno, Indonesia’s Ministry of Tourism
In order to stimulate regional event managers to grow in number and quality, the Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy is rolling out the Kharisma Event Nusantara program which will cover 110 top events across Indonesia. “The development of tourism villages is also one of our top tourism recovery strategies because it has a direct effect on the regional community, in villages. This is what has been pushed forward currently,” said Wisnu.
Efforts to maintain the presence and to promote Indonesian tourism to the global audience have also been taken by the Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy from exhibitions, and family trips, to sales missions. Supported by a number of campaigns such as #DiIndonesiaAja, #WonderfulJourney, #ItstimeforBali, as well as other destinations.
The development of five Super Prioritized Tourism Destinations (DPSP) which includes Danau Toba, Borobudur, Likupang, Labuan Bajo, and Mandalika to improve the overall quality, and sustainability as well as to establish a digital-based system is also being carried out. The five DPSPs is hoped to be able to significantly improve the country’s economy and open new job opportunities.
There will also be the Visa on Arrival, which will be issued to foreign tourists when they arrive in Indonesia. The Second Residence Visa is intended for foreign visitors or those who obtained Indonesian citizenship and want to live and contribute to the economy of the archipelago country. Visa exemptions are offered for nine other member countries of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), namely Brunei, Philippines, Cambodia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.
In January of this year, thousands of Chinese tourists began to arrive en masse to Indonesia, especially to Bali, after authorities in China lifted travel restrictions early this month. Since then, the Indonesian government has been exploring ways to attract more Chinese tourists, including the possibility of direct flights from three major cities in China, such as Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou.
Indonesia is targeting 255,000 tourists from China by 2023. Indonesia recorded 94,924 visits from China from January to October 2022. More than 2 million tourists from China visited Indonesia each year before the pandemic.
The return of Chinese tourists is expected to support the overall foreign tourist arrivals target this year. Indonesia aims to record 3.5 million to 7.4 million foreign visits, Sandiaga Uno, the Minister of Tourism and Creative Economy, said in a statement Friday. China is one of the biggest markets for inbound tourism in Indonesia.
“According to data from online travel agents in China, there has been an increase in the search volume for overseas tourist destinations by 430%. Indonesia is among the top 5 searches and the search volume for Bali has increased by 250%,” Uno said.
Tourism in Bali is starting to recover after a very difficult period. In 2021, Bali only received 45 international tourists, mainly because of the strict border control measures and a closed airport. This number provided by the Central Bureau of Statistics of Bali, and later on was confirmed to CNN by Nyoman Gede Gunadika, head of the tourism section of Bali province.