Bali seeks cleanup amid high arrivals

The provincial administration of Bali has launched a tourism development offensive to address complaints about garbage management, limited infrastructure, security and connectivity. The new tourism master plan will focus on destination development, promotion, the tourist industry and human-resource development, Ida Bagus Kade Subhiksu, head of the province tourism office, said in the Jakarta Post.

Bali welcomed around 2.88 million foreign tourists and 5 million domestic tourists in 2012, marginally surpassing the provincial board’s expectations of 2.8 million foreign tourists. Subhiksu has forecast that foreign arrivals will jump to 3.1 million in 2013.

The soaring popularity of the island has strained infrastructure and created noise pollution engendered through creeping traffic woes. In the short term, Bali authorities aim to expand Ngurah Rai International Airport in Tuban to address connectivity problems.

Australia remained the dominant source of tourists to the majority Hindu island in 2012, followed by China, Japan, Malaysia and South Korea. The US, Singapore, the UK and France are also major markets. Pointedly, the Chinese were conspicuously more present on the tourism circuit, representing the highest growth market for Bali.

Indonesia hit a record number of arrivals in 2012, registering 5.1 per cent year-on-year growth from January-November, bringing total visitors to the archipelago to 7.3 million.