The Ministry of Tourism and the Creative Economy reports that foreign tourist visitors to Indonesia through the end of November 2012 have reached 7.227 million, against a target for the year of 8 million.
The State News Agency Antara quotes the deputy minister of Tourism and the Creative Economy, Sapta Nirwandar, saying, “Until this point we have almost achieved 8 million foreign tourists, an increase of 5% over last year.”
Nirwandar sees no impediments to Indonesia achieving its 8 million targeted foreign visitors by December 31, 2012. That number, when achieved, will represent a new record number of visitors for Indonesia, earning an estimated $9 billion in foreign exchange for the country.
Sapta also pointed out that Indonesia has managed to achieve growth rates in tourism that surpass the international average rate of growth of 4%. He continued, saying that at the outset of 2012, many naysayers expressed misgivings that Indonesia would achieve 8 million visitors due to the continuing worldwide economic crisis.
In calculating the size of the Indonesian tourism economy, the Ministry estimates that 245 domestic tourist trips were also taken in 2012.
Proud of tourism’s achievements, Sapta praised tourism’s ability to create employment, generate national and regional tax revenue and encourages in new investment.
The Ministry estimates that indirect taxes from the tourism sector in 2012 earned Rp. 11.57 trillion (US$1.18 billion) and new investment in the tourism sector increased 1.47% over last year when investments totaled Rp. 120 trillion (US$12.2 billion).
Sapta projects that by 2024 Indonesia will welcome 20 million foreign tourists annually earning foreign exchange of US$20 billion for the nation.
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