TRAVEL NEWS – June 30, 2021: The Indonesian government has decided to postpone the opening of Bali for foreign tourists for the time being. That is what Minister Sandiaga Uno of Tourism and Creative Economy has announced† Indonesia has long planned to Bali to reopen to tourists in July but have to come back to that a few days before the month starts.
Due to the increase in Covid-19 cases in several areas in Indonesia, such as Jakarta and Central Java, there is no other option, says Minister Sandiaga Uno. Given the current situation, the government seems wiser to postpone the reopening of Bali for the time being.
Bali reopening postponed to third quarter 2021
The reopening of Bali is expected to be delayed until the third quarter of 2021. This statement caused huge disappointments, especially by the tourism industry in Karangasem, as they have already prepared their businesses with all the requirements to welcome international tourists back.
“We are so disappointed with that statement, especially with all our efforts and money spent during the preparation phase before welcoming the tourists back.” said Kariasa, the head of the Karangasem Hotel and Restaurants Association.
The coronavirus pandemic has devastated Bali's economy. Bali has been a magnet for vacationers for decades thanks to its spectacular beaches, vibrant nightlife and distinctive Hindu culture. Due to the corona pandemic, we are currently more than 60 Hotels for sale in Bali, this number is expected to increase further in the coming period.
Also read: Living in Bali | The current situation, empty streets and corona rules
“We were aiming for late July, early August, but we need to consider where we are in this recent spike (in cases of coronavirus),” Indonesia's Tourism and Cultural Economy Minister Sandiaga Uno told Reuters in a conversation on Monday. .
“We will wait until the situation is more favorable.”
The number of coronavirus infections has risen across Indonesia in recent weeks, including in Bali, which has suddenly quadrupled in the past month. There are currently just 200 cases a day – but the sudden increase, despite the smooth vaccination program, is alarming.
Uno said he wanted Bali's daily coronavirus infections to drop to 30 or 40 a day before reopening.
Exact infection numbers unclear
The true extent of Bali's infections may be masked by the low test rates. The Indonesian government has adopted a strategy of testing less while prioritizing Bali for vaccinations. The Indonesian government saw good early results as most people infected with coronavirus showed only mild symptoms, Uno said.
While the bed occupancy rate was approaching 100% in many parts of the neighboring, densely populated island of Java, he said the rate in Bali was below 50%.
About 71% of the Balinese have now received their first vaccine dose. The target of 70% has therefore been achieved. In terms of vaccinations, the island is right on schedule.
Only vaccinated tourists are allowed
Indonesia's tourism minister, Sandiaga Uno, also said a week earlier that it plans to only admit vaccinated tourists to Bali† This applies to both domestic and international visitors.
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