Bank Indonesia says the Bali economy is projected to grow by 5.66% in 2011, despite predictions of sluggishness from some economic observers.
As reported by Bali Post, the chief of the Bali branch of Bank Indonesia, Jeffrey Kairupan, believes Bali is to some degree immune to the economic difficulties experienced in other parts of the globe and estimates growth may soar as high as 6.5% for the island in 2011. "The tourism sector will remain the barometer and main engine of the province. But in the coming year the improvement of the island's infrastructure must become the focus of policymakers," said Kairupan.
Kairupan said the traffic congestion affecting south Bali must be satisfactorily resolved in order to avoid economic growth being stymied. At the same time, the Bank Indonesia director said their was substantial enthusiasm and interest in infrastructure projects for Bali, saying, "I have received information that a number of investors, such as the Chinese, have declared an interest in investing in this sector."
Another Bali-based banking observer, Made Kembar Sri Budhi, is also convinced that Bali's economy will grow by more than 6% in 2011. He sees growth, however, fed more by consumptive spending rather than by new investment.
Further hope for growth in Bali's economy is fed by improvement in a number of foreign economies world-wide which will boost both tourism visits and export sales.
The economists pointed to the continuing failure of economic growth in Bali to lift the agricultural sector. Despite much lip service in official circles regarding the fundamental importance of agriculture, the development of Bali's agriculture sector has not kept pace with the island's rapid tourism development.
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