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Keeping Trade Fair for the Balinese

Balinese Airport Traders Protest for Prioritization in Allocation of New Commercial Space at Renovated Bali Airport

(10/19/2012) Hundreds of traders operating from commercial spaces at Bali’s Ngurah Rai International Airport marched on the Bali House of Representatives (DPRD-Bali) on Tuesday, October 16, 2012, to protest plans to open all commercial stands and spaces to rebidding.

Quoted by Beritabali.com, the chairman of the Association of Ngurah Rai Airport Traders Association, Wayan Sukses, complained, “Such a luxurious airport is being built, but there’s no Balinese working inside.”

One of the airport traders, Ketut Siti, told the press that she and her fellow traders had worked for decades in Bali’s airport. Siti said she hoped the expansion of the airport would also mean the area allocated to traders would also be expanded.

Ketut continued: “Our obligations have been satisfactorily met, so there is no justification that we are not allocated space in the new airport. We want to expand our business in the airport, especially with the airport growing 7 times in size.”

The chairman of Commission I of the DPRD-Bali, Made Arjaya, said the parliament hopes that existing traders will not be displaced by the airports massive renovation. “The DPRD-Bali requests that Angkasa Pura delay any plans to tender the commercial spaces until discussions can be held between the traders and Angkasa Pura. That is our recommendation. No tender process before meetings are held between Angkasa Pura and the traders. We will not intervene, but we want the people of Bali to also enjoy the luxury of the newly renovated airport. Don’t allow us (the Balinese) to become guests on our own island,” said Arjaya.

The public relations spokesperson for PT Angkasa Pura, Sherly Yunita, was unavailable to Beritabali.com for comment.