Indonesia to lose $10 billion in tourism revenue – Bali hit hardest

Deserted beach in Bali

Indonesia will be facing more than $10 billion in wiped-out tourism revenue as recreational travel has come to a near complete halt, President Joko Widodo said at a cabinet meeting recently after much of the country went in a lockdown as virus infections keep rising.

In particular, the popular holiday island of Bali, where about 80 per cent of the economy is linked to tourism, is hit hardest among Indonesia’s few mass tourism destinations. Indonesia’s de-facto border closure could prove catastrophic for Bali’s island population of 4.2 million people, where some 170,000 Balinese are living on less than $2 a day and most suddenly have no income any more.

“Many people will lose their jobs because there will be no tourists. But it will impact the poorest people most,” Ariyo Irhamna, an economist specialising in poverty at the Institute for Development of Economics and Finance in Jakarta, told Al Jazeera.

“What we are hearing is that the central government in Jakarta may not be able to help them. They are concentrating on incentives for investors and the business community. There is no plan B,” he said.

Number of arrivals to fall to five million from 16 million

Overall, the Indonesia’s government said it was preparing stimulus packages for the tourism industry and a safety net for workers to fend off the impact as the number of foreign tourists is expected to fall to five million this year from last year’s more than 16 million as a result of global travel restrictions.

“Economic stimulus for businesses in the tourism and creative industry must be prepared so they can survive and don’t resort to large-scale layoffs,” Widodo said.

“I am confident that this will only last through the end of this year, and by next year there will be a boom in tourism,” he added.

Indonesia has so far seen the most coronavirus fatalities in Asia after China. As of April 18, confirmed cases stood at 6,248, with 535 deaths and 631 recovered.

Deserted beach in Bali Indonesia will be facing more than $10 billion in wiped-out tourism revenue as recreational travel has come to a near complete halt, President Joko Widodo said at a cabinet meeting recently after much of the country went in a lockdown as virus infections keep rising. In particular, the popular holiday island of Bali, where about 80 per cent of the economy is linked to tourism, is hit hardest among Indonesia’s few mass tourism destinations. Indonesia’s de-facto border closure could prove catastrophic for Bali’s island population of 4.2 million people, where some 170,000 Balinese are living on...

Deserted beach in Bali

Indonesia will be facing more than $10 billion in wiped-out tourism revenue as recreational travel has come to a near complete halt, President Joko Widodo said at a cabinet meeting recently after much of the country went in a lockdown as virus infections keep rising.

In particular, the popular holiday island of Bali, where about 80 per cent of the economy is linked to tourism, is hit hardest among Indonesia’s few mass tourism destinations. Indonesia’s de-facto border closure could prove catastrophic for Bali’s island population of 4.2 million people, where some 170,000 Balinese are living on less than $2 a day and most suddenly have no income any more.

“Many people will lose their jobs because there will be no tourists. But it will impact the poorest people most,” Ariyo Irhamna, an economist specialising in poverty at the Institute for Development of Economics and Finance in Jakarta, told Al Jazeera.

“What we are hearing is that the central government in Jakarta may not be able to help them. They are concentrating on incentives for investors and the business community. There is no plan B,” he said.

Number of arrivals to fall to five million from 16 million

Overall, the Indonesia’s government said it was preparing stimulus packages for the tourism industry and a safety net for workers to fend off the impact as the number of foreign tourists is expected to fall to five million this year from last year’s more than 16 million as a result of global travel restrictions.

“Economic stimulus for businesses in the tourism and creative industry must be prepared so they can survive and don’t resort to large-scale layoffs,” Widodo said.

“I am confident that this will only last through the end of this year, and by next year there will be a boom in tourism,” he added.

Indonesia has so far seen the most coronavirus fatalities in Asia after China. As of April 18, confirmed cases stood at 6,248, with 535 deaths and 631 recovered.

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