Indonesias international marine event Sail Raja Ampat, to be officially kicked off by President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono in Raja Ampat, West Papua on June 21, is expected to help boost the countrys tourism.
The event was particularly expected to promote tourism in West Papua and accelerate the tourism development in the province, Minister for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Sharif Cicip Sutardjo commented in a statement here on Friday.
Raja Ampat has one of the most beautiful marine panoramas in the world that could attract many foreign tourists, he explained.
The government will organize Sail Raja Ampat 2014 with the aim to accelerate the development and improve the welfare of the people in West Papua.
"The international sail event has become a model for the development acceleration program on islands and in remote areas," he elaborated.
The minister believed that Sail Raja Ampat will become an effective way to promote Papua and surrounding areas as a favorite destination for domestic and international tourists.
The theme of Sail Raja Ampat is "Developing Marine, Taking Raja Ampat to World Tourism Fora."
Coordinating Minister for Peoples Welfare Agung Laksono stated the objective of organizing Sail Raja Ampat is to accelerate the regional development, improve infrastructure, and stimulate investment in the host region.
"In Raja Ampat, there is a geo park which is more beautiful than the one in Halong Bay Vietnam," Minister Agung Laksono pointed out.
Sail Raja Ampat is to be organized on June 21, almost coinciding with Sentani Festival, which is held annually in Papua on June 19.
Since 2009, Indonesia has organized the annual Sail Indonesia five times - Sail Bunaken 2009, Sail Banda 2010, Sail Wakatobi- Belitong 2011, Sail Morotai 2012 and Sail Komodo 2013.
Sail Raja Ampat is expected to have participation from, among other places, Malaysia, Australia, the Netherlands, Thailand, The Philippines, and the United States. (Antara)