Jakarta — Indonesia`s tourism sector will suffer losses worth around Rp9 trillion in foreign exchange following the eruption of Mount Agung in Bali since the end of November.
During the launch of the Helicity helicopter transportation service in Jakarta on Monday, Tourism Minister Arief Yahya made the statement based on the calculation of an estimated Rp250 billion in foreign exchange per day earned from 15 thousand tourists visiting Bali.
“Hence, count for yourself how many days since the incident occurred until Dec 31, it is about 36 days and when multiplied by Rp250 billion, the figure reaches about Rp9 trillion that we will lose in foreign exchange,” he explained.
Due to the natural disaster, the target of 15 million foreign tourist visits will certainly also not be achieved this year. Until last September, the government was still optimistic of achieving the target. However, since Mount Agung erupted, the government has estimated a reduction of some 1 million foreign tourist arrivals.
“By only achieving 14 million foreign tourist visits, we will reach 93 percent of the total target,” Yahya said. In order to meet the target, the government continues to conduct massive campaigns in the Riau Islands, which have become one of the main entry gates for foreign tourists to Indonesia after Jakarta and Bali.
The Central Bureau of Statistics has recorded a decline of 4.54 percent in the number of foreign tourists visiting Indonesia in October 2017, one of the main impacts of Mount Agung`s eruption. The decline in the number of foreign tourists entering through the Ngurah Rai International Airport in Bali was recorded at 15.99 percent, or 462.3 thousand arrivals, as compared to 55.2 thousand in the previous month.
In October 2017, the number of foreign tourist arrivals was recorded at 1.15 million comprising 964.8 thousand foreign travelers entering through 19 main gates and as many as 193.7 thousand arrivals from outside the main entry points.
Some of the main entry points that witnessed a decline in the number of passengers in addition to the Ngurah Rai Airport is the Soekarno-Hatta Airport, at 1.70 percent, and Batam, at 4.89 percent.