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Is BIP Project Now DOA?

Controversial Bali International Park (BIP) Project May Be Doomed with Insufficient Time Remaining for its Construction Before the 2013 APEC Summit

(2/18/2012) Both The Jakarta Globe and The Jakarta Post are reporting that the controversial Bali International Park (BIP) project may be nixed, as the raison d'être for massive tourism project now seems out of reach.
Promoted by the National Government as an essential part of the preparations of the 2013 APEC Summit to be held in Bali, Governor Made Mangku Pastika says it would now be impossible to complete the project in time for the international conference.

The APEC Summit is expected to take place in Bali in November 2013 and to attended by 20 heads of state and their accompanying delegations.

The plans put forth for the BIP included a 10,000-seat convention center and 23 luxurious villa residences to house the visiting Kings, Presidents and Prime Ministers during their several nights on the island. The US$280 million project also planned to erect a 200-room hotel, an international hospital, art markets, galleries and parks.

A presidential decree issued in 2010 directed a group of Ministers to ases the market need for the project and coordinate its fast-track completion as a matter of national importance. Despite widespread concerns that such a complex would only worsen Bali’s over-supply of hotel rooms, the Ministers seemingly paid little heed to stipulated market supply studies and immediately commenced to promote the project's many benefits to Bali’s once the APEC Summit had runs its course.

Also poised to be ignored, were national rules requiring a competitive bidding process for selecting venues for international conferences hosted by the Indonesian government. From the onset, the BIP was promoted as the "official" venue for the APEC event, despite protests from some quarters that Bali had existing conference facilities that had a demonstrated historical capacity to handle conferences that were larger than the coming APEC Summit.

As word of the project spread, environmental and cultural groups organized spirited protests that called into question the potential negative environmental and cultural impacts of the proposed complex. Other protests decried a lack of transparency and project information by the projects developers PT Jimbaran Hijau, violations of provincial zoning rules and the blatant violation of a moratorium on the construction of new hotel projects in Bali.

The developer’s woes grew worse as questions arose over their legal title to the land required for the project, the legality of permits granted to the developers and their inability to obtain a needed final permit from the regent of Badung.

Developers insist that they have not been formally advised that the project is dead, but, at the same time, are apparently not commenting on whether construction in time for the APEC conference remains a viable proposition.

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