The government has cut its foreign tourist arrival target for 2014 as the slow recovery in the global economy will continue to further reduce people’s spending on travel and other leisure activities.
year, the number of foreign tourists is expected to reach 9.2 million,
below the estimate of 10 million, in line with the arrival trend this
year, which is expected to see foreign tourist arrivals reach 8.63
million, below the initial target of 9 million.
from the Central Statistics Agency (BPS) showed the number of foreign
tourist arrivals had reached a total of 7.13 million in the first 10
months of the year, an 8.36 percent increase from 6.58 million in the
same period last year.
Even though the growth of foreign tourist
arrivals in the first 10 months was not as high as expected, Tourism
and Creative Economy Minister Mari Elka Pangestu said the growth was
still relatively high as it was above the country’s economic growth and
global tourism growth, which stood at 5.74 percent and 4 percent,
“Foreign exchange earnings from tourism are
projected to reach US$9.87 billion by the end of this year, increasing
by 8.17 percent from the figure we recorded in 2012. We also see a
strong contribution from tourism and creative industry to the country’s
GDP [gross domestic product],” Mari said recently.
tourism’s contribution to GDP was expected to increase by 6.4 percent to
Rp 347.35 trillion ($28.48 billion) in 2013, while the contribution
from the creative economy sector was predicted to increase by 10.8
percent to Rp 641.82 trillion.
Food and fashion are the top two
contributors to the creative sector, with Rp 208.6 trillion and Rp 181.6
“We’re optimistic that 2014 is going to
be a good year for the [tourism and creative] sector as we will
continue our programs and strengthen collaboration with our partners
such as China, Japan, Taiwan and Korea,” she continued.
tourism, for instance, she said the ministry expected to see some
progress on the Indonesia–China Tourism Years initiative, launched in
November 2013, which aimed to boost traveler numbers from the world’s
second largest economy.
Through this initiative, the ministry
launched a Mandarin language website, cn.indonesia.travel and
collaborated with local agencies to attract 1 million Chinese travelers
by the end of 2014.
Indonesian Tourism Promotion Board (BPPI)
chairwoman Wiryanti Sukamdani said the board would help the government
reach the target by promoting the archipelago to China’s secondary
cities like Fuzhou and Xiamen.
“Xiamen Airlines already has a
direct service to Soekarno-Hatta [International Airport] and this will
help us better tap into the Chinese market,” Wiryanti said.
the European market, the ministry will focus on marketing activities in
Germany since the growth of travelers from this country remains strong
In addition, German carrier Lufthansa will resume its Jakarta–Frankfurt service on March 30, 2014.
Tourism and Creative Economy Minister Sapta Nirwandar said sharia
tourism would be further developed as an alternative package for Muslim
travelers next year.
“Sharia tourism is a promising sector
because [Muslim] travel spending is huge. For halal food alone, they
spent $1.6 trillion in 2012,” Sapta said, quoting data released by
Global Islamic Economy Summit 2013 in Dubai.
He said the ministry
and Indonesia’s Ulema Council (MUI) had created guidelines on this
category of tourism and both parties were committed to developing the
sharia concept via four products next year: hotels, restaurants, travel
agents and spas.
Jakarta Governor Joko “Jokowi” Widodo recently announced the city was ready to become a sharia destination.
is preparing a gubernatorial decree (Pergub) on halal certification.
The certification will not be compulsory but hotels, restaurants and
catering businesses will be encouraged to obtain one.
tourism is leisure and travel activities that comply with Islamic law,
including the provision of cuisine and beverages that contain no pork,
lard or alcohol. (Jakarta Post)