Indonesia’s Minister of Culture and Tourism, Jero Wacik, claims the construction of a new international airport in Buleleng, North Bali, is important to evenly distribute tourism visitors across the island. Wacik says that an airport in the north will split visitors across both the northern and southern regions of Bali.
Wacik also says that a new airport facility in Bali’s north will act as a stimulus for development in the areas surrounding the airfield.
Quoted in Beritabali.com, Wacik said: “If the infrastructure and facilities in Buleleng are good, the tourists spending time in Buleleng will increase. I am convinced that Buleleng tourists will not journey to Denpasar.”
Location for new Airport Still Not Clear
While public debate on the proposed airport for North Bali continues, an exact location for the proposed facility remains undecided.
30 engineers from India are reportedly performing site surveys, examining various options.
Minister Wacik told the press that the engineers are seeking a suitable location for the proposed airport. Among the criteria on the engineers checklist are selection of a location far from mountains and suitable from a development standpoint for 100 to 200 years into the future.
Officials are targeting that the new airport in Buleleng will be completed and operational by 2014. A candidate Indian investor from North Bali has been identified for a project estimate to cost between Rp. 1.5 to 2 trillion (US$170million to US$227 million).
Currently two possible locations are under review in Buleleng. One alternative is near the eastern border of the Buleleng regency while the second is in western Buleleng, near Bali's former capital of Singaraja.
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