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Gathering European Storm Clouds

Bali Business Leaders Says European Arrivals Likely to Decline in Face of Continuing Economic Crisis

(8/10/2012) The widening economic crisis in Europe is predicted to result in declining number of European visitors to Bali.

The chairman of the Association of Indonesian Entrepreneurs (APINDO), Panudiana Kuhn, said on Tuesday, August 7, 2012, he expects the expenditure of European visitors in upper class segment will remain stable.

As reported by Bisnis Bali, Kuhn said outbound travel from Europe to overseas destinations, including Bali, would decline as the economies of the European Union falter.

He said that any decline in European travelers to Bali may be compensated by increasing levels of domestic tourist arrivals to the island. Kuhn said that he predicts domestic tourism may increase 20% in 2012.

According to Balidiscovery.com and Bali by the Numbers, European tourist arrivals to Bali for the period January-June 2012 totalled  297,413 – an increase of 4.1% over 2011.

The APINDO chairman predicts that four and five star hotels will be favored by European visitors to Bali.

Kuhn said it will take Europe at least two years to emerge from its current economic crisis or even longer if firm steps are not taken to address that region’s economic ills.

He said that Europe’s sickest economies of Greece, Portugal and Spain remain minor markets to Bali. Meanwhile, European tourists from Germany, France and Holland remain chief markets from Europe to Bali.

Kuhn failed to mention the United Kingdom and Russia – both of which remain major players in term of Bali tourism.

Kuhn compared the current European economic crisis to the crisis experienced by Indonesian in 1997-1998 and the American economic crisis of 2008.