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Tourists arriving in Bali want to weed out: new initiatives of the authorities.


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Foreign guests arriving in Bali may begin to be carefully checked - they do not want to let everyone on the island. Another initiative of local authorities is aimed at reducing the number of scandals, which are increasingly becoming guests from other countries. Deputy Governor of Bali Tjokorda Oka Artha Ardana Sukawati (aka Chok Ace) has announced rules that will help fill the Island of the Gods with only "quality tourists".

As for the quotas [which the governor intends to introduce - ed. note], we decided to postpone this. We already have a yearly quota set today,” he said at the Bali leader’s office on Tuesday.

The official suggested introducing a selection system to block entry to the island for those who might violate local rules or offend sacred places for the Balinese. However, the details of how it will function and at what stage a red light can be turned on before travelers are again not given ...

Another statement from the authorities concerns those foreigners who are expelled from Bali in disgrace. All the same Chok Ace promised not to make public their faces and names.

“This can cause a backlash and damage the image of the island. We will not name their data. Only the type of violation for which we are deporting. Perhaps we will inform near important religious and significant places exactly how many people were punished for misbehavior near a particular shrine.”

The initiative of the governor of Bali, Vayan Koster, seems far from reality. He proposed introducing quotas for the entry of tourists from abroad. The head of the province spoke about either 7 or 6 million tourists a year.

Of course, there should be a more detailed assessment of the regulation of the entry of guests from other countries. Whether it will be limited to, for example, seven million or six, I cannot say for sure. There are certain criteria. We need to study this issue. We may have to tighten and cut the current number of entrants,” Koster said at a meeting with reporters. One of the reasons for the unpopular measures in this case was the obscene behavior of foreigners.

After receiving a signal from the population, we established surveillance of a foreigner who arrived on an investor visa. His clients were from different countries. We had evidence: videos from social networks in which a Ukrainian offered to provide illegal services. When we were convinced that he was violating the conditions of his stay, we arrested him.”

Another acute issue that concerns, among other things, a huge number of expat investors is construction. All the same Megawati urged the Balinese authorities to limit the construction of new hotels and apartments.

“Fertile lands should not be changed. Stop building hotels. We will no longer allow new hotels to be built. We have mechanisms to protect the lands of Bali,” the politician said. In addition, she recalled that many hotels and villas operate on the island without permission and suggested that a joint group be created to check them.

Luhut cites data from the 2021 World Tourism Development Index, which shows foreign tourists spending in Indonesia is lower compared to other countries that also offer quality tourism. Bali Tourism Board (BTB) Chairman Ida Bagus Agung Partha Adnana agreed with the idea of taxing foreign tourists, but only on the condition that all fees remain entirely in the regional budget.

The official argues that levying taxes on tourists is nothing new in the world, and cites Thailand and Guam as examples, where it is already in place.

“This is fair and beneficial for infrastructure and for cultural restoration. And this is good. For example, we charge 10 dollars from five million foreign tourists a year, do you know how much that is in total?” Agung believes that the additional tax will not burden foreign tourists as long as its amount is adequate.
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