Indonesia is creating ‘new Bali’ for 2017 as it aims to promote destinations beyond the country’s key hotspot. Minister of tourism Arief Yahya explains the initiative.
What is ‘new Bali’?
The term expresses our expectation that our 10 new priority destinations will attract as many tourists as those visiting Bali Island. The government will form special authorities that will manage the 10 priority locales, and implement a centralised destination management system. Each Board of Authority will have the primary task of developing special economic zones of tourism in those areas. The board in each destination will build tourist amenities including hotels, resorts, golf courses, restaurants, convention centres, leisure parks and other facilities. The project covers several aspects of development and includes infrastructure projects such as transportation, public facilities, information and computer technology readiness, and electricity access. It also includes improving security, health, hygiene and the environmental sustainability of existing enterprises in each destination by developing cooperation with institutions and authorities.
Why did you decide to develop it?
The introduction and the development of “new Bali” aims to enrich the experience of tourists in Indonesia. We believe it is important to develop new destinations, using Bali as a role model, to support and accelerate the progress of achieving the target for international tourists visiting Indonesia.
What do you aim to achieve?
Creating “new Bali” will provide tourists with more choice beyond Bali, which has – for some time now – been an iconic and key destination in Indonesia. The new destinations will offer unexplored paradises, with the aim of achieving the 12 million foreign tourists set for 2017 and 20 million for 2019.
What will be the key draws?
Diverse ethnicities, languages and cultures plus undiscovered natural beauty make Indonesia one of the most colourful destinations in the world. The 10 priority destinations will not be developed to resemble or replace Bali, but to offer an alternative, each with its own distinct characteristics, combining nature with culture and tradition.
What are the attractions?
Nature, culture and local communities will make up the attractions for visitors. Tourists can explore each destination, interact with local people, learn age-old traditions and discover diverse cultures.
Who do you expect it to attract?
The newly promoted destinations are expected to attract both first timers as well as repeat travellers – all from various walks of life who are willing to try something new and challenging. Millennials are among the potential targets. Origin-wise, our target is mainly regional visitors, including China, Singapore, Malaysia, Australia, and Japan. We are also targeting long-haul visitors with special interests including diving, snorkelling, surfing and hiking, and this group is an important contributor to tourism yields.
How can international visitors access the priority destinations?
The government has been upgrading existing infrastructure and facilities as well as developing new ones for better connectivity, making the regions more accessible. More airports – both with international and domestic connectivity – are being upgraded and developed to support increased accessibility to destinations outside of Bali.
What type and how much accommodation is available?
The accommodation available is varied, ranging from homestays to luxury hotels. More hotel operators are establishing their businesses in Indonesia too by building or managing hotels in the newly developed destinations. The government is also preparing a plan to support the development of thousands of homestays in the destinations. This project, still in its initial stages, is in cooperation with the Ministry of Public Works and government banks.
How will you promote it?
We want to promote Bali and beyond so that ports close to Bali can also develop. After enjoying Bali, visitors can continue on to other destinations, such as nearby Lombok. Global promotion is specifically targeting 12 focus markets, including south-east Asia, China, Australia, Europe, the Middle East and the US. Meanwhile, the domestic version of the campaign, Pesona Indonesia, is running simultaneously to drum up domestic tourism interest.
The 10 priority destinations are: