Indonesia's Department of Culture and Tourism has announced its intention to continue the current Visit Indonesian Year (VIY) campaign for a third year as part of plans to attract 7 million foreign visitors in 2010.
Sunrise, Sunset, One Season Following Another
Visit Indonesia Year which was initially launched after 2008 was already well underway, was retained for an additional year in 2009. The latest announcement from the government is that the program will be retained for a third year - 2010. Credited with bringing 6.4 million visitors to Indonesia in 2008, tourism officials remain confident that VIY 2010 will pave the way for modest growth in tourism arrivals while arrivals to competing destinations in the region continue to shrink.
Tourism officials also point to Indonesia's improving security situation as contributing to tourism growth now that violence-prone fundamentalist elements are being arrested, run to ground or physically eliminated.
Sapta Nirwandar, the Director General of Marketing at the Department of Culture and Tourism, told the Bali Post that suggestions are under consideration to drop the "year tag line" and just retain "Visit Indonesia."
Critics of the retention of VIY for a third year believe the program's message may be losing its potency and its continued retention underline a fundamental lack of creativity in how the country's tourism is promoted.
In 2008, Indonesia welcomed 6.4 million foreign tourist who spent an estimated US$7.5 billion in foreign exchange. Indonesia expects more than 6.5 million foreign tourists in 2009.
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