In the past eight years, the highest tourism growth in the world was recorded by Southeast Asia, so the role of this sector to the economy of the countries in the region is important. Data from the Ministry of Tourism and Creative economy shows that in 2013 the flow of tourists to ASEAN countries increased 12% to 92.7 million people, while global growth is only 3.6%.
Vice Minister of Tourism and Creative Economy, Sapta Nirwandar, in Jakarta, on Wednesday (May 21) explained that in 2023 the tourism sector is projected to contribute USD480 billion to ASEAN economy with an average growth of 5.8% per year and investment growth of 6.8% per year. In Indonesia, labor absorption in this sector reached 10.18 million people or 8.9% of the total number of workers. Contribution of the tourism sector to total exports of goods and services this year increased from 10% to 17%.
Sapta said that this sector directly contributes IDR347 trillion to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) or 23% of total State Budget Amendment (APBN-P) of 2013. According to Sapta, to harness the great tourism potential in Indonesia, it takes a regular and consistent program in each province in order to promote tourism in each region.
The Vice Minister said that the tourism industry is proven to be immune from global crisis. In global economic downturn, Indonesia’s tourism continues to grow, even surpassing the national economic growth. He said that tourism growth in Indonesia in 2014 reached 9.39% or higher than the previous year. This figure is above national economic growth which reached 5.7%.
He added that tourism sector also ranks fourth as a contributor to foreign exchange revenue in 2013. In terms of tourism competitiveness rank in ASEAN, as reported by the World Economic Forum (2013), Indonesia’s position continues to climb each year. Today, Indonesia’s competitiveness rank is the 70th. In 2012, Indonesia ranked the 74th. This rank is above Brunei (72nd), Vietnam (80th), Philippines (82nd), and Cambodia (106th).
He also said that Indonesia‘s tourism industry is not only “on track” but has also entered an advanced stage. It was shown by the application of tourism business standardization by government. The strength of the tourism industry in Indonesia is still in natural resource and cultural diversity and relatively low costs. Some related sectors that could potentially impede this industry are still under construction, for example, hygiene and health.
He said that Indonesia is the most attractive tourism investment destination for investors. This is because recently the performance of tourism in Indonesia tourism competitiveness also attracts investors. Data of “The Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Index” reported by the World Economic Forum (WEF) in 2013 mentions that the competitiveness of Indonesian tourism can increase by four ranks.
Indonesia is considered as a country which has successfully taken advantage of the momentum, so in the G-20, Indonesia is among the countries with a high tourism growth. The World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) projected that in 2014, Indonesia is likely to achieve growth in foreign tourist visits by 14.2% and domestic tourist visits by 6.3%.
Indonesia stands out in terms of cultural and historical heritage and natural beauty and wealth. The improved perception of Indonesia is also a driving factor for investors to invest in Indonesia. He said that the various efforts were continuously made by the Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy with tourism stakeholders in order to increase tourism investment in Indonesia. (E)
Business New - May 23, 2014