JAKARTA, 14 JUNE 2021 - The Governor of Bali, Wayan Koster, was invited to attend an Exclusive Meeting by the President of the Republic of Indonesia, Ir. Joko Widodo, at the Merdeka Palace, 7 June 2021, at 09.30 AM GMT+7, to discuss the restoration of Bali tourism. In the Exclusive Meeting, the President was accompanied by the Minister of State Secretary, Cabinet Secretary, Minister of Tourism and Creative Economy, Minister of Finance, Governor of Bank Indonesia, and Chairman of the Financial Services Authority.
Led by the President, the meeting discussed 5 topics, namely: the success of COVID-19 vaccination in Bali; extending COVID-19 health protocols; encouraging domestic tourists’ visits to Bali; preparation for opening a corridor for international tourists with strict health protocols; and finally, balancing the Balinese economy with the creative and digital economies, as well as increasing exports, to reduce dependence on tourism.
The Governor of Bali’s report to the President covered several key aspects. Firstly, regarding the COVID-19 vaccination program, Bali has reportedly received approximately 3 million doses of vaccine through the Ministry of Health, accounting for 50% of total vaccine requirements. The mass vaccination program is being implemented in synergy with Regents/Mayors throughout Bali, and is supported by the Bali Police, Kodam IX/Udayana, universities, government and private health facilities, hotels, and other public facilities.
As of 6 June 2021, more than 1.4 million people in Bali have received their first COVID-19 vaccination (47%), with more than 659 thousand people (22%) having received their second shot. It is important to note that Bali requires approximately 6 million doses to vaccinate 3 million people, 70% of the total population, to achieve herd immunity.
Secondly, the impact of vaccination has begun to show in the decline in new COVID-19 cases. There are less than 50 new cases per day, a decrease from the previous periods. Additionally, the cure rate has increased to more than 95%, above the national average of 91%. The death rate has dropped to 3.71% and is decreasing, despite remaining above the national average of 2.78%. The number of active cases has reached less than 1% and continues to decline below the national average of 5.24%, comprising 473 people (227 of whom are hospitalized, and 246 are in isolation/ quarantine). Bali still requires an additional 3 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine to meet the target of 3 million vaccinated people.
The impact of COVID-19 has led to a severe decline in tourism and economic growth. In 2020 Bali experienced negative economic growth of 9.3%, and negative 9.8% in the first quarter of 2021. This condition must be addressed quickly through exclusive spatial policies in order to improve tourism and the Balinese economy.
In the Exclusive Meeting, the Governor of Bali conveyed 10 requests and proposals from parties including Bali tourism stakeholders. First, an additional 3 million doses of vaccine were requested, to complete the Bali COVID-19 vaccination program by the end of July 2021. Second, special incentives were requested to encourage domestic tourist visits to Bali. Third, the Work From Bali (WFB) program requires promotion to reach all Ministries/Institutions. Fourth, an increase in the number of national and global meetings hosted in Bali was requested. Fifth, welcoming a limited number of international tourists by the end of July 2021 was proposed. Sixth, continuing the Tourism Grant Program for tourism business actors was proposed, as well as supporting district/city government revenues due to the drastic decrease in Regional Original Income. Seventh, extending the period of loan installments for tourism business actors through changes to the Financial Services Authority Regulations, adjusting to the recovery of Bali’s tourism and economy. Eighth, a labor-intensive National Economic Recovery program was proposed. Ninth, soft loans for Bali tourism stakeholders were proposed. And finally, tenth, it was requested that the President of the Republic of Indonesia officially open the 43rd Bali Arts Festival online, on 12 June 2021.
After some discussion, and consideration of the support available from the Minister of Tourism and Creative Economy, Minister of Finance, Governor of Bank Indonesia, and Chairman of the Financial Services Authority, the President agreed in principle to the requests and proposals of the Governor of Bali. The President assigned the Ministers and related officials to ensure the effective implementation of these decisions.
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