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Tourism: A Tool for Equitable Development

Bali and Beyond: Spreading the Benefits of Tourism to Baliís North and East, and to Eastern Indonesia

(5/20/2012) The Coordinating Minister for the Economy Hatta Rajasa has confirmed that the government is in the midst of developing North Bali and the eastern regions of Indonesia in order to create a more equitable rate of development in comparison with other regions of the Country.

“Bali’s western and southern regions can be said to be experiencing no problem in terms of infrastructure, however the proposed airport to be built in (Bali’s) east and north with a new airport around Buleleng will be done in order that those areas can also develop,” explained Rajasa.

Hatta Rajasa’s comments were made during a limited meeting conducted at the governor’s office for West Nusa Tenggara (NTB) held in Mataram, Lombok on Friday, May 18, 2012 as reported by Kompas.com.

That meeting, chaired by President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, discussed three main agenda items, namely the activities of West Nusa Tenggara, Bali and East Nusa Tenggara in support of the Masterplan for the Acceleration and Expansion of the Economic Development of Indonesia (MP3EI); poverty eradication programs being carried out on the regency and municipality levels; and efforts to integrate new immigrants from East Timor into East Nusa Tenggara.

In addition to the Coordinating Minister for the Economy Hatta Rajasa and the President, the Lombok meeting included a number of cabinet ministers, the governor of West Nusa Tenggara M. Zainul Majdi, regents and mayors from across West Nusa Tenggara, Bali’s governor Made Pastika and the Vice-governor of East Nusa Tenggara Esthon Foenay.

In that meeting, Bali’s governor Pastika cited the need for a more equitable effort on behalf of the government to spread tourism development across all sectors.

Hatta said that if development in Bali’s east and north was done in a planned manner that would reduce current pressure on Bali’s south and west. “In this way, there would be equity achieved in the development of Bali tourism which, until now, remains the mainstay of the island with tourist number now almost reaching 7 million,” explained Hatta.

Hatta said that President Yudhoyono has already given instructions that Bali’s must continue to be developed in order that more international and domestic tourists can visit the island.

He said the President wants visitors to Bali to increase significantly reaching 20 to 30 million people by 2025. “It is hoped that in 2010 the number of tourist visitors will reach 20 million and 30 million by 2025.