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Lowering Our Expectations

Nation-wide Arrivals Likely to Hit 6.4 Million in 2008, Far Short of Targeted 7 Million.

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In light of recent developments, will Indonesia succeed in its goals of garnering US$8 billion in foreign exchange from a targeted 8 million foreign visitors in 2008? Closer to home, can tourism officials deliver on their plans to get 226 million Indonesians to travel domestically and spend Rp. 82 trillion (US$7.4 billion) on that travel? quotes Noviendi Makalam, the Secretary of the Directorate General of Marketing at the Department of Culture and Tourism as trying to gain some distance from previously stated targets, saying "the 8 million foreign tourists target and US$8 billion in foreign exchange is the result a government-wide plan involving not only the Department of Culture and Tourism, but also other institutions including the Department of Finance."

Noviendi explained that the official target of 7 million foreign tourists spending a total US$6.7 billion in 2008 forms part of the "Visit Indonesia Year 2008" campaign. The tourism official admitted to that the proclaimed target is likely to slip with only 4,069,474 tourists coming to Indonesia through the end of August 2008. Noviendi suggested Indonesia would end 2008 with 6.4 million tourists, a 16.4% increase over the 5.5 million visitors achieved in 2007.

The government is currently considering extending "Visit Indonesia Year" throughout 2009 and focusing its marketing efforts on 13 key markets.

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[See: Editorial Ė Ignorance is Bliss]

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