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Making Indonesia Shipshape

Indonesia Tourism Minister Calls for Full Attention on Developing Cruise Tourism and Making Bali into a Turnaround Port

(3/23/2012) Indonesia’s Minister of Tourism and the Creative Economy, Mari Elka Pagestu, wants to prioritize the development of cruise tourism - a segment of the tourism industry that she contends continues to show positive growth from year to year.

“In 2009 the number of foreign tourists coming to Indonesia on cruise ships totaled 68,598, a number that increases to 112,882 people last year (2011),” said Pangestu.

Quoted by Bisnis.com while addressing stakeholders in the Indonesian cruise industry attending a the Cruise Shipping Miami Conference, the tourism minister outlined promotional steps to garner the cruise seegment, saying: “In addition to intensifying promotional activities by attending international cruise shows and undertaking sales missions, it is very important to coordinate the preparation of ports and destinations to meet the needs and demands of cruise operators.”

Pangestu said that Indonesia would target cruise operators with itineraries in the Asian and Australian regions, bearing in mind that both the size and number of vessels continues to grow. Because of this, the minister said Indonesian cruise development would focus on port facilities, specifically the size of ports and water depth.

Mari Pangestu said that in order to achieve 500,000 cruise passengers in 2016, the government will undertake upgrading of ports such as Benoa, creating a Bali port suitable for ship turnarounds. Other ports receiving attention as cruise shipping centers are Tanjung Priok in Surabaya, Tanjung Mas in Semarang and Tanjung Perak in Jakarta.

Secondary destinations being prepared for international cruise ship visits include Sabang (Aceh), Bangka, Belitung and Probolinggo (Mount Bromo).
While in 2011 the number of cruise ships visiting Indonesia increases the number of calls declined from 189 in 2010 to 177.

Data from the Ministry of Tourism said that in ranking the popularity of Indonesian port of calls saw Bali ranked first (40%), followed by Komodo (13%), Semarang (11%) and other destinations (16%).

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[Cruise Ship Services by Bali Discovery]