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Indonesia Travel Restrictions

Indonesia Travel Restrictions Suspended

Indonesia Travel Restrictions Suspended

Indonesia Travel RestrictionsIndonesian President Joko Widodo formally withdrew the policy limiting public movement (Pembatasan Kegiatan Masyarakat – PPKM), effective 30 December 2022.

According to the Singapore Straits Times, the decision by the Indonesian government to end policies controlling and limiting domestic activities and travel was taken after Indonesia had not experienced a significant increase in daily new cases for ten consecutive months. At its height, the PPKM Policy bought inter-provincial transportation by bus and air to a virtual standstill and, over time, required travelers to be fully vaccinated, undergo COVID testing, and submit to extended periods of quarantine and re-testing. (Main Article: Indonesia Travel Restrictions)

In abolishing PPKM measures, President Widodo said: “But, we need to remain vigilant . . .the public must independently take steps to prevent infection, detect symptoms, and seek treatment.”

News published by NIKKEI ASIA, under the title “Indonesia lifts all remaining COVID restrictions for the new year,” casts a spotlight on Indonesia, which once recorded the highest level of COVID-19 infections in Asia, but recorded less than 1,000 new daily cases over the past week, also reflected in relatively low rates of hospitalization and fatalities. (Main Article: Indonesia Travel Restrictions)

Indonesia Travel RestrictionsNIKKEI reported Health Ministry data that lists Indonesia as the fourth most populous country in the world and has recorded more than 6.7 million overall cases, including 160,583 deaths. Almost 75% of the Indonesian population older than six years, or 174.7 million people, have received two COVID vaccinations, and a further 68.5 million have received a COVID-booster shot. (Main Article: Indonesia Travel Restrictions)

Praise was also heaped on Indonesia by Free Malaysia Today reported a statement by President Joko Widodo that his country had conquered all impediments to preventing the spread of COVID-19 by ensuring that most Indonesians now carry the antibody against the virus. 

In a press conference announcing the end of PPKM, President Joko Widowo said: “There are no longer any limits on meetings and movements.”

Also celebrating the end of PPKM in Indonesia, The Hindustan Times has published an article No masks, no tracking app: Indonesia lifts remaining Covid restrictions. (Main Article: Indonesia Travel Restrictions)

President Widodo said: “On Friday, (30 December 2022) Indonesia eliminated all remaining steps to control the spread of COVID-19. Effective immediately, this was done because the majority of the country’s populace now carried the antibody against this disease.” Adding: “There will no longer be any limitations on meetings and movements.”

With the President’s ruling, it is presumed that the need to present proof of vaccination to travel by air domestically has also been abolished. (Main Article: Indonesia Travel Restrictions)

 

Retirees Not Applying for 2nd Home Visas

Indonesia Travel RestrictionsThe 2nd Home Visa, launched with much fanfare in late October 2022 and scheduled to become available on 25 December, has failed to attract any takers in Bali.

The State News Agency Antara reports that Anggiat Napitupulu, Head of Immigration in Bali for the Ministry of Law and Human Rights, confirmed that there had been no applicants for the new class of 2nd Home Visas filed with his office. (Main Article: Indonesia Travel Restrictions)

The new class of 2nd Home Visas is intended to provide wealthy foreigners the opportunity to obtain stay permits valid for 5 or 10 years without any obligation of employment or a requirement to own a business in Indonesia. The key requirement for a 2nd Home Visa is that the applicant must be able to demonstrate to immigration authorities that they have Rp. 2 billion on deposit with a Government Bank or can present a deed of ownership for a luxury property in Indonesia. (Main Article: Indonesia Travel Restrictions)

The government’s anticipation that foreigners living in Indonesia on retirement visas would quickly migrate from retirement visas to 2nd Home Visa has failed to materialize.

There are an estimated 6,000 foreigners living in Bali using retirement visas. 

Speaking at a press conference held in Denpasar on Monday, 26 December 2022, Napitupulu said: “For Bali, I have not yet received confirmation that any foreigner has departed to Indonesia holding a ‘second home visa.’ 6,000 people in Bali hold retirement visas.”  (Main Article: Indonesia Travel Restrictions)

Putting to rest widespread concerns that those on retirement visas would be required to convert their immigration status to a 2nd Home Visa, the Immigration Chief for Bali added that individuals holding retirement visas can renew and extend their current visa.

Those applying for a 2nd Home Visa must present proof of an Rp. 2 billion deposit with an Indonesian government bank or a property certificate for a “luxury” property in Indonesia. Within 90 days of the second home visa applicant’s arrival in Indonesia, they must present the supporting financial documentation to immigration from a bank or a certified copy of the land ownership certificate. (Main Article: Indonesia Travel Restrictions)

 

Police Mull 3-Tiered Motorcycle Licensing

The Indonesian police are revisiting long-standing plans to issue new “C-Class” driver’s licenses (SIM) across three sub-types. The appropriate SIM-C driver’s license class will be linked to the vehicle’s engine size.

  • A SIM C License will be valid for motorcycles with 250 cc engines or less.
  • A SIM CI License will allow the holder to operate a bike with an engine between 250cc and 500 cc.
  • A SIM CII License will be required to operate a motorcycle with an engine of more than 500cc.

A spokesman for the National Traffic Police, AKNP Arief Budiman, said the differentiations for a SIM C Driver’s License are based on the need for specific skill sets depending on the size of the motorcycle. (Main Article: Indonesia Travel Restrictions)

Tiered Motorcycle LicensingThe three classes of SIM C are outlined in Police Regulation Number 5 of 2021, signed by the Head of the National Chief of Police, General Listyo Sigit Prabowo, on 19 February 2021. That regulation has yet to be implemented by the Indonesian police, who claim more time is needed to socialize and enforce the new licensing system for motorcycles.

While police are mulling when to launch the three-tiered motorcycle licensing system, a national survey is now underway to determine the actual number of motorcycles with engine capacities greater than 250 cc operating in Indonesia. (Main Article: Indonesia Travel Restrictions)

As reported by Beritabali.com, police are also preparing requirements to be put in place to obtain a CI or CII Motorcyclist License. While drivers must be at least 17 years of age to get a SIM C Standard Motorcycle License, this age limit increases to 18 years for a SIM CI and 19 years for a SIM CII. 

Also, to qualify for a SIM CI, an applicant must have held a SIM C license for 12 months. Similarly, to apply for a SIM CII, applicants must have held a SIM CI for 12 months. (Main Article: Indonesia Travel Restrictions)

These requirements raise the legal question if anyone is eligible for a SIM CII for at least one year from the introduction of the new three-tiered system. In other words, anyone desiring a SIM CII for a “monster bike” of 500 cc or more would need to park that bike for one year while they first obtain and hold the newly minted SIM CI for one year to meet the requirements to apply for a SIM CII.

Applicants for SIM CI and SIM CII are also obliged to pass a road safety theory quiz, undergo a motorcycle simulator test, and take a road test supervised by the police. A minimum passing score of 70 is required for the theory portion of the test. Those failing to obtain a passing score are allowed two separate retests within 14 days. (Main Article: Indonesia Travel Restrictions)

 

Indonesia Sets Tourism Targets for 2023

Tourism IndonesiaSpeaking during a visit to Jembrana Regency in Bali on Thursday, 29 December 2022, Indonesian Minister of Tourism and the Creative Economy, Sandia Salahuddin Uno, urged West Bali to strengthen its readiness for the onslaught of tourists that will result in the opening of a toll road connecting Denpasar and Gilimanuk. The Minister said future developments will help achieve a more equitable distribution of tourism across all Bali areas that are now overly focused on the south and east of Bali. (Main Article: Indonesia Travel Restrictions)

The Minister underlined how the new toll road scheduled for completion in 2025 would impact Bali’s development. Adding: “We need to get ready because Jembrana will be along the toll road connecting Denpasar and Gilimanuk. We must prepare a tourism ecosystem as many things will soon be relocating to West Bali.” (Main Article: Indonesia Travel Restrictions)

Commenting separately and quoted by Beritabali.com, Minister Sandiaga reminded his listeners that Bali remains foremost in the world’s mind as a tourism destination. He urged that Bali’s sustaining popularity be used to the optimum. Adding: “This is the basis of our continuing optimism; the tourism ecosystem and creative economy must be prepared, starting now. This is our homework so that tourism recovery takes place more equitably, emphasizing quality and sustainability.”

Minister Sandiaga said that the target for domestic and international tourists in 2023 is projected to double the current performance. For international tourists in 2023, Indonesia aims to welcome 7.4 million visitors, while domestic travelers are expected to hit between 1.2 and 1.4 billion movements.

Sandiaga said: “All tourism and the creative economy operators must address these (targets). Don’t let us get left behind! We must prepare to create new business opportunities that create the widest employment opportunities.” (Main Article: Indonesia Travel Restrictions)

 

High Winds & Rain Claim Trees in Denpasar 

weather indonesiaBalipost.com reports that heavy rains and strong winds experienced in Bali’s southernmost region on Friday night, 23 December 2022, uprooted trees in several locations in Bali’s capital.

The Head of Denpasar’s Disaster Mitigation Agency (BPBD-Denpasar), I.B. Joni Ariwibawa, said on Saturday morning, 24 December, that a downed tree on Jalan Sudirman in Denpasar, claimed the life of a driver Suwarto (39) and caused minor injuries to his passenger, Vebry Aberson Simarmata (23).

The BPBD responded to reports of fallen trees in locations that include Jalan Ahmad Yani Utara in front of Peguyabngan Temple in North Denpasar, Jalan P.B. Sudirman in front of the Santo Yoseph Junior High School (SMP), and Jalan Raya Sesetan, South Denpasar. (Main Article: Indonesia Travel Restrictions)

The winds also upended trees on Jalan Setra Dalem Sesetan in front of the Sesetan Cemetery, South Denpasar; Jalan Pulau Lingga, Denpasar in front of Banjar Ambengan Pedungan; and on Jalan Malboro in West Denpasar. “These incidents were handled by the BPBD Fire Brigade in Denpasar and the environmental agency,” added Joni.

On Thursday night, 22 December 2022, the day before the storm, several trees also fell victim to the extreme weather, including a Weeping Fig Tree in Puputan Field in Central Denpasar. A tree on Jalan WR Supratman also fell, blocking the roadway that was eventually cleared by BPBD and Environmental Agency (DLHK) workers.

Separately, a division head of DLHK-Denpasar, Ida Ayu Widhiyanasari, ST, said that Angsana Trees (Pterocarpus indicus) are among the trees most susceptible to falling in wind storms. Because of this, city authorities said they would discontinue planting this tree species.

Trees standing in soil made moist by rains and floods often fall in high winds when their root systems become compromised.

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Online Visa-on-Arrival Indonesia

Online Visa Indonesia

Online Visa Indonesia

Online Visa IndonesiaThe Director General of Immigration -Ministry of Law and Human Rights has announced that foreign travelers coming to Indonesia can apply online for an electronic visa (e-visa-on-arrival) 90 days before arrival.

“The time limit for the use of an E-VOA is 90 days from the date of issuance.,” explained the sub-coordinator for public relations of the Director General of Immigration, Achmad Nur Saleh, in a written statement issued on Thursday, 15 December 2022. Saleh continued, saying that foreign nationals can apply online for a visa-on-arrival three months before their intended arrival date. The online VOA will be valid for 30 days. (Main Article: Online Visa Indonesia)

Immigration officials urge foreign travelers to apply before commencing their travel to ensure the VOA is in hand and confirmed before arrival in Indonesia. If circumstances require, the application for a VOA can be made manually at the port of entry.

To apply for an e-VOA, travelers should prepare a photo of the biodata page of their passport (format JPG/JPEG/PNG). A passport-size personal photograph and a major credit/debit card to pay the visa fee (Visa/Mastercard/JCB). (Main Article: Online Visa Indonesia)

Third-party payment of the visa fee in a name other than the visa applicant can be made using 3D secure technology for international bank card transactions.

 

Ain’t Nobody’s Business if I Do!

adultery law indonesiaA storm of controversy has erupted following the legal endorsement of a new section in the criminal law addressing adultery and sex, with members of the Indonesian House of Representatives accusing Australians and other foreigners of failing to understand the new law. In fairness, based on reports in local media, more than a few Indonesiannedia sources are also confused by recent events. (Main Article: Online Visa Indonesia)

Article 412, paragraph 1 of the new law states: “Anyone living together as husband and wife outside of marriage shall be punished with imprisonment for a maximum of 6 (six) months or a fine.”

Many members of the international media are focusing on Indonesia’s ratification of the law that criminalizes sex outside of marriage. One source, BBC.com, has published coverage under the title “Indonesia Passes Criminal Code Banning Sex Outside Marriage,” emphasizing an alleged criminalization of non-marital sex.

Similarly, The New York Times has written an article titled “In Democratic Indonesia. New Penal Code erodes Long-Held Freedoms.” (Main Article: Online Visa Indonesia)

Meanwhile, Indonesian press and social media outlets are decrying the new law as overreaching and an outright interference in the private rights of the individual. In response, Indonesian lawmakers accuse the press of misinterpreting and twisting the intent and purpose of the new law.

Speaking from Jeddah on Wednesday, 07 December 2022, the Indonesian Minister of Law and Human Rights, Yasonna Laoly, said: “What is developing is a misperception, especially from outside. For example, regarding extramarital sex, It seems that the twist is going too far. I have to underline that extramarital sex (in this instance) is a complaint-based offense.”

By “complaint offense,” the Minister meant the police can only action charges of adulterous behavior if an immediate family member initially files a formal police complaint.

Yasonna explained that no one would be arrested for adultery or extramarital sex without a police complaint filed by a family member. The cabinet minister accused those depicting the new law as interference in personal privacy of overreaching. He is asking that foreign visitors not be worried about the new anti-adultery law that can only apply if a family member makes a police complaint. Adding: “There has to be a complaint made. If an Australian wants to holiday in Bali with a partner or stay in the same room or whatever, that’s their business. This would require a formal complaint from the parents in Australia which is not their culture,”

In addition to Yasonna, the head of the House of Representatives (DPR), Sufmi Dasci Ahmad, has tried to defuse the controversy surrounding the new law, emphasizing the law is grounded in the need for someone to make a formal police complaint. Ahmad said the DPR would soon create a task force to socialize the new law to the public. (Main Article: Online Visa Indonesia)

 

RI Adultery Law: What You Need to Know

new adultery law indonesiaThe recent ratification of a new law – the KUHP on adultery and extramarital sex has generated widespread international press comments, much of it exaggerated and misrepresenting the true nature of Indonesia’s criminal justice system.

Here’s what you Need to Know and Understand About Indonesia’s new anti-adultery law.

  • KUHP 412 is primarily a family protection act to safeguard existing legal unions between husbands and wives. It creates a new legal tool for a man or woman to take criminal action against an unfaithful spouse to preserve and reaffirm their marriage vows.
  • It is a law created explicitly by lawmakers to provide a legal remedy exercised within the limits of the family unit to protect the sanctity of a marital union.
  • Under the new law, enforcement action CAN ONLY BE TAKEN by the police after a formal police complaint is lodged by an immediate family member of one of the parties accused of participating in an illicit sexual relationship. This means that the person making the criminal complaint under the law must be the legal spouse (i.e., husband or wife), mother, father, or child of the accused. (Main Article: Online Visa Indonesia)
  • The new law is intended to help limit or end extramarital unions through corrective rather than legally punitive measures. Accordingly, the party making the complaint is entitled to withdraw their complaint and end all proceedings at any time before trial.
  • The law’s structure prevents its use against foreign couples traveling in Bali and the rest of Indonesia. There is no practicable or readily available way for immediate family members residing abroad to file a police complaint concerning their family member, presumably engaged in an illicit sexual union in Indonesia.
  • Indonesian leaders know the varying international cultural and legal perceptions of marriage. No plans or legal basis exist under the new law for changing how foreign or domestic guests will be handled while staying at Indonesian hotels. As in the past, hotels will continue to welcome and check in adult guests without requiring the presentation of marriage certificates. (Main Article: Online Visa Indonesia)
  • In the future, if police action is ever taken against domestic travelers under the new law, this can only happen in three years’ time once the law is formally promulgated. And, even in that instance, police could only move in response to a formal complaint from an immediate family member of the accused.
  • Those asking why the new law has been introduced should understand its passage is seen in many circles as deference to the cultural sensitivities of several segments of Indonesian society. At the same time, the law is purposely structured to have a very narrow applicability that would have no discernable impact on domestic or international travel movements and patterns. (Main Article: Online Visa Indonesia)

Govt Ditches High Entrance Fees to Komodo

komodo national park entrance feeThe Minister of Tourism and the Creative Economy, Sandiaga Uno, has announced that plans have been revoked to increase the admission fee to visit Indonesia’s Taman National Komodo. 

Precipitating widespread protest, plans were announced earlier this year to increase the individual admission fee to Rp. 3.75 million on 01 January 2022.

Speaking in Jakarta on Thursday, 15 December 2022, Minister Sandiaga said: “It (The High admission fee) has been withdrawn and revoked. So there will be no increase in the entrance tariff for Komodo.”

The Minister did not elaborate on the decision to revoke the higher admission fees long championed by Minister Luhut Bismar Panjaitam, Minister of Maritime Affairs and Investment. In July 2022, the Provincial Government of East Nusa Tenggara announced the new admission fee for the Komodo National Park would increase to become Rp. 3.75 million. (Main Article: Online Visa Indonesia)

That announcement sparked demonstrations in Labuan Bajo, NTT, which serves as the gateway to The Komodo National Park. Local businesses threatened to strike, causing the NTT Provincial government to postpone the substantial hike in admission fees until 01 January 2023.

Based on the Minister of Tourism’s most recent announcement, the admission cost will remain at Rp. 150,000 per visitor.

Local tourism operators are complaining about the contradictory announcements. The eventual reversal of the unpopular policy will do little or nothing to recoup hundreds of canceled bookings and momentum in group interest in traveling to Komodo. (Main Article: Online Visa Indonesia)

 

Criminal Liability for RI Bar Operators

indonesia bar operator liabilityA new article (424) in Indonesia’s revised criminal code (KUHP) should give pause to bar and nightclub operators.

Under the new law, bartenders and service staff – and by extension, their employers – can be held criminally responsible for serving drinks to customers who are intoxicated and should have been refused further service. (Main Article: Online Visa Indonesia)

Service staff and their places of employment discovered to continually serve drunk customers more alcoholic beverages may be subject to criminal prosecution and jail terms of multiple years.

Among the stipulations of the just ratified Article 424 of the Criminal Code include the following:

  • Persons found guilty of selling or serving intoxicating drinks to someone already intoxicated can be fined and imprisoned for a maximum period of one year.
  • Persons found guilty of selling or serving intoxicating drinks to children can be fined and imprisoned for a maximum period of two years.
  • Persons found guilty of using violence and the threat of violence to compel someone to drink or consume an intoxicating substance can be fined and imprisoned for three years.
  • If anyone provides intoxicating beverages or substances that results in serious injury to the user or others, they can be fined and imprisoned for a maximum period of five years.
  • If anyone serves the intoxicating beverages or substances described above, the use of which results in the death of the user or others, can be imprisoned for a maximum of seven years.
  • If the serving of intoxicating beverages to inebriated individuals, to minor children, or forcing the consumption of these items is done by an employee as part of their assigned duties, the operating license of the company can be revoked. (Main Article: Online Visa Indonesia)

The new Indonesian law reflects the situation in many countries that hold bars and entertainment establishments legally responsible if they knowingly continue to serve someone already intoxicated.

 

Cigarette Taxes Increase 01 January 2023

indonesia cigarette tax increaseIndonesian Finance Minister Sri Mulyani has announced that effective 01 January 2023, the excise tax on Tobacco products would increase an average of 10%. (Main Article: Online Visa Indonesia)

Speaking at the DPR Complex, Sri Mulyani told the press on Monday, 12 December 2022, that the higher taxes would apply as soon as January 2023

As reported by CNN.com, Kamrussamad, a member of Commission X of the DPR, questions if the tax increase has been adequately socialized in advance to the public. The Legislators said no “road map” exists detailing the steps leading up to the tax increase’s eventual implementation in 2023. He also lamented that the amount of untaxed, illicit tobacco products still in circulation exceeds 5%. (Main Article: Online Visa Indonesia)

“Illegal cigarettes stand at 5.5% in 2022. When will this be reduced to 3% or 2%? This situation is chaotic, and the Ministry’s road map does not define any clear policy. The amount of illegal cigarettes is always more than 5%. This represents a leakage in the State’s funds,” commented Kamrussamad.

In defense of its administration, the Ministry of Finance insists it has always paid attention to the impact of its policies on employment and related industries. They also consider the effect on state revenue. A spokesman points out that competing interests are at play. For example, some want to emphasize health and do not necessarily think in the same direction as those who want to create jobs. (Main Article: Online Visa Indonesia)

A Ministry spokesperson said introducing excise tax would require 5-10 years to complete.

Seen from another perspective, the head of The Fiscal Policy Agency (BKF) of the Finance Ministry, Febrio Nathan Kacaribu, discussed the slowness of the creation of a road map on matters related to tobacco excise taxes.

He explained that such a road map must contemplate a range of considerations and that his Ministry always pays attention to issues linked to public health, employment, and manpower and also consider the impact of policy decisions on related industries. In the end, the Ministry must always weigh how any issue impacts State revenues. (Main Article: Online Visa Indonesia)

Differing increases in excise tax apply for kretek machine-made cigarettes, white machine-made cigarettes, and handmade kretek cigarettes.

The Finance Minister said that the average increase in excise tax would be 10%, with the two types of manufactured kretek cigarettes increasing between 11.5% and 11.75%. White manufactured cigarettes will incur an increase in excise tax of between 11% and 12%. Meanwhile, handmade cigarettes will see an excise increase of only 5%. (Main Article: Online Visa Indonesia)

 

194 Foreigners Deported from Bali in 2022

foreigner deportation baliNusaBali.com reports that 194 foreign nationals were deported from the Province of Bali in 2022. 

Records kept by the Bali Ministry of Law and Human Rights office said the largest deportations involved Brazilians and U.S. nationals. The Bali Chief of Immigration, Anggiat Napitupulu, confirmed 194 deportations through 20 December 2022. (Main Article: Online Visa Indonesia)

Napitupulu also confirmed that 15 Brazilians were deported for violating the terms of their visas. The Brazilians failed to pass the on-arrival interview process at Bali’s Airport, causing immigration examiners to presume those rejected were not visiting Indonesia for tourism purposes but for professional and business reasons. 

A group of 15 Brazilians was denied entry into Indonesia.

Immigration also deported 12 U.S. Nationals in 2022, mainly for overstaying their visas.

Anggiat said that of the 194 foreigners deported in 2022, most were deported for overstaying their visas. Others were deported after completing a prison sentence or because they were caught involved in activities not allowed under their visa class. (Main Article: Online Visa Indonesia)

 

US Cancels LGBTI+ Special Envoy RI Visit

Online Visa IndonesiaThe US Government has announced the cancellation of a Visit to Indonesia by President Biden’s Special Envoy to Advance the Human Rights of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender Queer, and Intersex (LGBTQI+) Jessica Stern. The planned visit was to meet with Indonesian leaders in the private and public sectors regarding President Biden’s 04 February 2021 Presidential Memorandum on Advancing the Global Human Rights of LGBTQI + persons.

The US Ambassador to Indonesia, Sung Y Kim, announced the cancellation of Stern’s visit. In canceling the visit, Ambassador Kim issued an official statement: “One of the reasons the United States and Indonesia have such a strong relationship is that we both uphold values such as democracy, human rights, diversity, and tolerance. Those values should apply to every member of society, including LGBTQI+ persons.” (Main Article: Online Visa Indonesia)

Despite the cancellation of Stern’s visit, Ambassador Kim added: “While we look forward to continuing our dialogue with religious leaders, government officials, and members of the public on the important topic of ensuring respect for the human rights of LGBTQI+ persons, after discussions with our counterparts in the Indonesian government, we have decided to cancel Special Envoy Stern’s visit to Indonesia. (Main Article: Online Visa Indonesia)

Knowing that around the world, LGBTQI+ persons experience disproportionate levels of violence and discrimination, it is important to continue the dialogue and ensure mutual respect for one another rather than pretending that the issues do not exist. Countries like Indonesia and the US can learn from one another about how to counter hatred and ensure more prosperous, inclusive societies for all.”

Jessica Eve Stern holds a Ph.D. from Harvard University in Public Policy (1992) with a Master’s Degree from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a Bachelor of Science Degree from Columbia University.

Dr. Stern has held professional assignments in the Clinton Administration’s National Security Council and the Council on Foreign Relations. She is highly regarded for her expertise and publication on counter-terrorism and law. (Main Article: Online Visa Indonesia)

Among those voicing objections to Stern’s planned visit to Indonesia was the Deputy-Chairman of Majelis Umum Indonesia (MUI), Anwar Abbas.

In a written statement on 01 December 2022, Anwar said regarding the arrival of Jessica Stern, the US special envoy to promote LGBTQI+ human rights from December 7-9 to Indonesia, the MUI has stated that it firmly rejects the presence of the special envoy.

Anwar emphasized that Indonesia, as a religious and civilized nation, does not need to receive guests who aim to damage and unsettle Indonesia’s noble religious and cultural beliefs and values.

Main Article: Online Visa Indonesia

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SEAZA Zoo Conference

SEAZA Zoo Conference 2023 at Bali Safari Park

SEAZA Zoo Conference at Bali Safari Park

SEAZA Zoo ConferenceThe Indonesian Island of Bali has played host to the 30th convening of the SEAZA (South East Asian Zoos and Aquariums Association) Conference at the Bali Safari and Marine Park situated in Bali’s Gianyar Regency. The 40-hectare Park is home to over a thousand animals across 120 species. It is world-renowned for its conservation and rare species propagation program, including endangered Komodo Dragons, Orangutans, Bali Starlings, Sumatran elephants, Sumatran tigers, and more.  

SEAZA has nearly 200 institutional members from Southeast Asia, comprised of conservation groups and zoos. (Main Article: SEAZA Zoo Conference)

“Every year, SEAZA holds an annual conference to be attended by members and delegates from various zoos throughout Asia, America, the Middle East, and Europe. This year, Perhimpunan Kebun Binatang Se-Indonesia (PKBSI) / Indonesia Zoos & Aquariums Association (IZAA) is the organizer of the 30th SEAZA Conference 2022 held at Bali Safari Park, November 20 to November 23, 2022,” said Rahmat Shah, said  IZAA on Friday, November 11, 2022.

Known internationally as “The Island of Gods,” Bali was chosen as the venue based on its reputation as a tourist destination. Rahmat explained that Bali is well-known for its beautiful natural scenery, traditions, art, and culture. Furthermore, The Island has an established strong record for hosting international conferences.

Before the SEAZA conference in mid-November 2022, Bali hosted the G-20 Summit, which welcomed the leadership of 19 countries. Bali has also proven its ability to implement health protocols to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

In his remarks opening the Conference, Rahmat Shah said there are ten PKBSI member-operated sites in Bali that SEAZA conference participants can visit. The Conference aims to be a forum for participants to discuss and exchange views and build networks for a better future in conservation organizations.

Opening of SEAZA Conference at Bali Safari Marine Park – 21 November 2022

SEAZA Zoo ConferenceThis year’s SEAZA Conference has adopted the theme “Stronger Together, For Sustainable Conservation & Eco-Tourism.” This theme reflects a shared enthusiasm in confronting the Covid-19 pandemic that has plagued the world for the last two years. 

Rahmat hopes that through this theme, all parties can learn that togetherness is the key to creating a group spirit in embarking on a brighter future. Rahmat reminded everyone that the global pandemic affects not only health but also all sectors, including the tourism industry and the operations of conservation organizations. Adding: “The responsibility to care for and protect animals rests on our shoulders.” 

The chairman of the Animal Welfare & Ethics and Organizing Committee of the 30th SEAZA Conference, Willem Manansang, said that 174 participants from 20 countries are attending the Conference. 

The participants will share their experiences, knowledge, and success stories, including strategies for dealing with the Covid-19 pandemic crisis. SEAZA members will also demonstrate the role organizations can play. Bali was chosen as the venue in the hope of increasing tourist arrivals.

In addition, attending virtually or in person at the Conference was the Minister of Environment and Forestry, Siti Nurbaya Bakar; Minister of Tourism and Creative Economy, Sandiaga Salahuddin Uno; Governor of Bali I Wayan Koster; and SEAZA President Cheng Wen-Haur.

Conference participants were also treated to safari park activities, the Bali Agung Show, seminars, and expert dialogues on a wide range of subject areas. Speakers will explain issues related to conservation activities, success stories, challenges, obstacles, and solutions taken in operating animal parks. 

 

Bali Links: Murder Verdict in MH17 Tragedy

murder verdict for mh17On 17 July 2014, a Malaysian Airline Boeing 777 flying from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur was shot down by Russian-controlled forces over eastern Ukraine, killing all 283 passengers and 15 crew on board. The shoot-down occurred during the war in Donbas, an area controlled by Russian separatist forces.

The initial findings of the Dutch Safety Board (DSB) and a Dutch Government investigative team that the missile was fired by the 53rd Anti-Aircraft Missile Brigade of the Russian Federation was affirmed last week by the Dutch Courts on Thursday, 27 November 2022. Lead Justice Hendrik Steenhuis declared that the Dutch Court found that MF17 was hit by a Russian-made BUK missile launched from a farm field near Peryomaisk, Mykolaiv Oblast in Ukraine, resulting in the death of 283 passengers and 15 crewmembers.

The ruling by the Dutch Court was handed down more than eight years after the catastrophe. Steenhuis said the Court had conclusively found that Russians were in complete control of the rebel troops operating in eastern Ukraine at the time of the incident that saw a field of crash debris spread across a wide area, including a field used to cultivate sunflowers. The Dutch Court also convicted in absentia for terrorism and murder two Russians and one pro-Moscow Ukrainian who failed to answer the summons to appear before the panel of judges. 

The three remain at large and were sentenced to life imprisonment. A fourth Russian man was found not guilty due to a lack of evidence. The three mass murderers who are now under an international warrant for their arrest are:

  •       Igor Girkin (51)(a/k/a Igoe Ivanovich Strelkov)– a former colonel in the Russian Federal Security Service (the primary successor agency to the former KGB). At the time of the incident, Girkin was the minister of defense and armed forces commander for the Donetsk People’s Republic militia. He was dismissed from his position one month after the missile attack. Girkin has publicly admitted “moral responsibility” for the attack but denies actually “pushing the button” that fired the missile.
  •       Sergey Dubinsky,a Ukrainian serving under Girkin’s command. 
  •      Leonid Kharchenko, a Ukrainian serving under Dubinskiy’s command.

murder verdict for mh17

A fourth man, Oleg Pulatovis, the only indicted man represented by legal counsel, was found not guilty by the Court due to a lack of evidence.

Meanwhile, Moscow has repeatedly refused responsibility for the shoot-down of MH17. The Russian Foreign Affair Minister has pledged to review the decision of the Dutch Court carefully.

The vicious missile attack on MH 17 caused the death of 283 passengers and 15 crew. The death toll of 298 comprised:

  • 27 Australians
  • 4 Belgians
  • 1 Canadian
  • 4 Germany
  • 12 Indonesians
  • 43 Malaysians
  • 193 Dutch Citizens
  • 1 New Zealander
  • 3 Philippines
  • 10 United Kingdom

The tragedy was sorely felt on the Island of Bali, with many foreigners and Indonesians who died in the plane’s downing had family, friends, and lovers in Bali.

If anyone knows the physical whereabouts of any of these three men, they should report that information to their local police or the nearest Interpol office.

 

Bali Targets 11 Million Malaysians in 2022

bali tourism 2023The continuing increase in the number of international airlines and air routes connecting the world traveling to Denpasar’s Ngurah Rai International Airport has prompted the management of Bali’s airport to target 11 million international and domestic travelers in 2022.

Spirits buoyed by the reactivation of flights between Kuala Lumpur and Denpasar by Air Asia X, Handy Heryudhitiawan, the general manager of Bali’s airport, has retargeted the total number of domestic and international passengers traveling through his airport at 11 million. Although there is only a little more than a month remaining in the year, he is optimistic that the 11 million total Malasyain traveler target will be reached.

Many are challenging Handy Heryudhitiawan’s projection suggesting it may be over-ambitious or misspoken, including all passengers of any nationality traveling on flights traveling between Malaysia and Bali. But, even from that perspective, the 11 million figure appears to be very over-inflated.

The inaugural Air Asia X Flight from Kuala Lumpur to Bali on Thursday, 24 November 2022, an Airbus A330 – Air Asia X Flight Number D7 798, carried 227 passengers. The return flight to Kuala Lumpur loaded and carried 325 passengers.

The new service connecting Kuala Lumpur and Denpasar will operate three times a week, flying on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays.

From January – October 2022, a total of 56,026 Malaysians landed at Bali’s airport. Currently, 22 international air routes connect Bali to the world, operated by 25 airlines. New routes and airlines have declared their intent to resume flights to Bali in the coming months.

 

Min. Wage Levels: Java, Bali, NTB, & NTT

bali wages 2023Official minimum wage levels for all the provinces in Java were announced on 29 November 2022, unexplainedly delayed eight days from the original date scheduled for announcement on 21 November 2022.

The minimum wage levels for the island of Bali and adjacent provinces of West Nusa Tenggara (NTB) Province and East Nusa Tenggara (NTT) for 2023 were announced earlier, to take effect on 28 November 2022.

The minimum wage levels for 2023 in Bali, NTB, and NTT.

  1. Province of Bali Rp. 2,713,672 increasing 7.81% from the 2022 minimum wage of Rp. 2,516,971.
  2. Province of NTT Rp. 2,123,994 increasing 7.54% from the 2022 minimum wage of Rp. 1,975,000.
  3. Province of NTB Rp. 2,371,407 increasing 7.44% from the 2022 minimum wage of Rp. 2,207,212.

The new minimum wage levels will take effect from 01 January 2023.

 

Mainland Chinese Poised to Return to Bali

chinese tourism baliIndonesia’s Minister of Tourism and the Creative Economy, Sandiaga Uno, announced on Saturday, 19 November 2022, that Mainland Chinese tourists are expected to return to Indonesia in 2023. Before the global pandemic, Chinese tourists represented one of the leading sources of foreign visitors to the Republic.

Sandiaga, quoted by the State News Agency Antara, confirmed that several Chinese Airlines have applied to resume flights to Indonesia. The Tourism Minister views the return of Chinese tourists as a positive development. Adding, the flight applications filed by PRC Airlines are a positive signal that the Chinese are prepared to reinstate Indonesia as a favorite holiday destination.

Sandiaga projects that at least 255,700 Chinese tourists will come to Indonesia in 2023. Before 2019 and the onset of the global pandemic, Chinese visitor numbers to Indonesia managed to achieve 2.07 million. Chinese visitors were second to Malaysians totaling 2.98 million.

At this time, the largest source of foreign tourists to Indonesia is Australia, followed in order of size by Singapore, Malaysia, India, and the U.K.

Sandiaga said the relaxation of travel restrictions imposed by the PRC government would facilitate the coming flights and significantly impact the rebuilding of Indonesia’s travel industry and creating employment opportunities.

 

Traffic Police: Watching From a Distance

bali traffic policeIn conformance with the order of the National Chief of Police, General Listyo Sigit Prabowo, calling for digital ticket ticketing and the ending of in-person ticket issuance by the police, equipment is being installed in major cities, including Bali’s capital of Denpasar, to allow Electronic Traffic Law Enforcement (ETLE).

As reported by Balipost.com, Commissioner Satake Bayu explained on Friday, 18 November 2022, that ELTE surveillance equipment has been initially installed in the following 7 locations:

  • At the intersection of Jalan Teuku Umar and Jalan Imam Bonjol
  • At the intersection of Jalan Bypass Ngurah Rai and Jalan Pulau Serangan
  • At the intersection of Jalan Bypass Ngurah Rai and Jalan Raya Kampus Unud
  • In front of the operations base on Jalan Bandara Ngurah Rai west of the Gas Station.
  • In front of the operations base on Jalan Bandara Ngurah Rai east of the Gas Station
  • On Jalan Bypass Ngurah Rai at Benoa, South Kuta

Satake Bayu said: “Electronic ticketing has been in operation for three months. The mobile system has been in use since preparations were underway for the G20 Summit.

Satake said the public who violate traffic laws are no longer ticketed directly, with traffic summons issued via an e-ticketing system. The actual traffic violation is digitally photographed and sent electronically to the violator based on the addresses recorded on the car registration (STNK).

The vehicle owner is expected to pay the fine shown on the issued ticket within two weeks or face difficulties in renewing their registration annually.

Traffic police officers on patrol can photograph the violation, which can be sent to headquarters for processing. Police say they will be patrol seeking motorists committing violations such as a failure to use a seatbelt, smoking while driving, or using a handphone while driving.

Traffic violators are given two weeks to settle their fines. Failure to pay would result in the vehicle registration being blocked in the system.

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Bali G20 Summit

Bali G20 Summit  – Influencers To Promote Themes And Tourism

Bali G20 Summit  – Influencers To Promote Themes And Tourism

Bali G20 SummitInfluencers partnering with the Indonesian G20 Presidency campaign have arrived in Bali. The group of influencers has been bought on board to promote the summit’s agenda and the island as a destination for business, entrepreneurship, and tourism.

The initiative is being headed up by the Indonesian Ministry of Communication and Information Technology. Speaking to the press, the Director General of Information and Public Communication of Kominfo, Usman Kansong, shared what vision behind the campaign. He said, ‘The presence of influencers is expected to make the public better understand and support the implementation of the G20. We are aware that the G20 event requires the participation of the wider community so that the theme of Recovering Together, Bangkit Perkasa, can be realized’. (Main Article: Bali G20 Summit)

The influencers chosen for the campaign come from all walks of life and all around Indonesia. The influencers will attend parts of the G20 Summit and various workshops. One of the participants is young swimmer Kania Atmaj. The Indonesian swimming record holder and south East Asia Games medalist is joining other high-profile Indonesian public figures, including Wahyu Mahendra, a travel photographer and model, and actress Dominique Diyose.

Speaking to the press, Balinese Kania Atmaj said, ‘When we can harmonize positive thoughts and apply a healthy lifestyle, then we can move, work and do many things’. She explained that she hoped that she would be able to use her platform to encourage more people to take part in a healthy lifestyle. There is a strong focus on global health and sustainability at the G20 Summit this year. (Main Article: Bali G20 Summit)

Bali G20 Summit influencerAt an event held on the 26th of October at Canna Bali, the influencers gathered to discuss the themes of the G20 Summit. They discuss everything from digital futures to health and sustainable energy. Dominique Diyose told the audience, ‘The use of clean energy must be realized and implemented considering the age of the earth is getting older, the threat of global warming and our responsibility to leave a healthy earth for the next generation’.

Diyose is also one of the founders of Bali Swap, a slow fashion movement in Bali that helps consumers make more ethical and environmentally friendly choices when it comes to fashion.  When talking about digital futures and how this could impact tourism and travel, especially in Bali, Wayhu Mahendra had some insights to share. He said, ‘Thanks to social media, I can get clients from various regions and even from abroad. The key is not to be complacent and keep exploring’. (Main Article: Bali G20 Summit)

With just over two weeks to go until the big event, the local government has confirmed that road closures and travel disruptions will be unavoidable, especially around Nusa Dua. The Denpasar Police Chief, Police Commissioner Bambang Yugo Pamungkas, held a meeting for stakeholders and the media on Tuesday, 25th October. (Main Article: Bali G20 Summit)

Bali G20 SummitHe explained, ‘Security is the main thing. Through this activity, it is hoped that all traditional village and sub-district officials can convey to the public about security mechanisms during the G20 Summit Presidency’. This includes limiting the movement of people in terms of ensuring office workers and schools work from home during the week of the event, where possible. (Main Article: Bali G20 Summit)

He apologized to business owners in the Nusa Dua area who may have to have their businesses closed for a few hours to ensure security protocols can run smoothly. Livestock in some areas will have to graze elsewhere, and street vendors will not be allowed to operate.

He explained that all traffic around Nusa Dua would be affected, along with the toll road to Sawangan. Specifically, in the Peminge area, only electric vehicles will be permitted over the week of the event. The main conference is being held on the 15th and 16th of November. (Main Article: Bali G20 Summit)

The Police Chief said, ‘We apologize in advance for any inconvenience caused by these restrictions. However, we only want the implementation of the activities to be safe and successful.

 

Bali Launches 10-Year Second Home Visa For Entrepreneurs, Retirees, And High Earners

10 year visa indonesiaIndonesia has announced the launch of a new 10-year second home visa. The new visa category will allow foreigners with over $130,000 in the bank to apply for a 10-year temporary residency permit for Bali and other popular destinations. There are hopes that this will help attract high earners, retirees, and highly skilled digital nomads to invest in building a life in Indonesia. (Main Article: Bali G20 Summit)

Anyone on a second home visa can live anywhere in Indonesia. Most of those who will take up the opportunity to invest in a second home visa will live in international hotspots like Bali, Jakarta, and Lombok. The visa will attract a new community of people to Bali and, the government hopes, trigger growth in less international areas of the country where investment would bring positive development.

The second home visa is available for five or ten years, and applicants must prove that they have IDR 2 billion in the bank, today’s equivalent of approximately USD 130,000. According to Acting Director General for Immigration, Widodo Ekatjahjana, the new visa ‘immigration policy is one of the non-fiscal incentives that can be a stimulus for certain foreigners to stay and contribute positively to the Indonesian economy amidst increasingly dynamic global economic conditions’. (Main Article: Bali G20 Summit)

He continued to explain, ‘Towards the implementation of the G20 Summit, today we officially launched the second-home visa. The goal is to attract foreign tourists to come to Bali and other diverse destinations’. The visa category is similar to that found in Costa Rica and Mexico, that makes it easier for international citizens to reside outside of their native homes for long periods of time.

bali visaThe new visa category forges another option for affluent digital nomads or remote workers who wish to reside in Indonesia long term. This, alongside the B211a socio-cultural visa, is being viewed by some as the complete digital nomad package of visas. However, the Department of Immigration confirmed a few weeks ago that the long-term digital nomad visa is still in the pipeline. (Main Article: Bali G20 Summit)

The launch of the new visa was celebrated in Canggu yesterday. Those in attendance included Widodo Ekatjahjana and the Bali Office for the Ministry of Law and Human Rights, Anggiat Napitupulu. It was a telling sign that announcement was made in Canggu, an area that the central and provincial governments are touting as the epicenter of the digital nomad and investment community in Indonesia.

Ekatjahjana told reporters ‘the target of this policy is foreign tourists who have money to enjoy their old age coming to Bali and other destinations in Indonesia. This is a stimulant policy given by immigration in the midst of economic recovery and a dynamic global economy.’ The visa costs just IDR 3 million (USD 192); according to the Indonesian Department of Immigration website, the visa allows foreigners to ‘carry out various activities, such as investment and other activities’. (Main Article: Bali G20 Summit)

Though seeking employment within Indonesia would still require a KITAS. It also states that the visa is for ‘foreigners or ex-Indonesian citizens who want to stay and contribute positively to the Indonesian economy’.

In the press release, Ekatjahjana invites tourism industry actors to Bali since collaboration with all stakeholders is essential for a better tourism environment than before. The application process is all done online. The web-based application can soon be completed at new visa indonesiathe imigrasi.go.id website, and there is not too much paperwork to produce. (Main Article: Bali G20 Summit)

Applicants must submit a copy of their passport with a minimum of 36 months validity remaining and proof of funds. They must submit a recent color photograph and a copy of their CV. What hasn’t been discussed publicly is whether the CV submission is simply a formality for record-keeping at the Department of Immigration or whether the contents of the applicant’s CV play a role in the decision-making process.

The Head of the Regional Office of the Ministry of Law and Human Rights in Bali, Anggiat Napitupulu, told reporters that the new visa would offer more choices for those who wish to reside in Bali. He said, ‘So far, when they look for VoA, it feels very irresponsible because the validity period is very short. So through this policy, we attract those who have capital, global businesses, and elderly tourists from various countries to enter Indonesia’. (Main Article: Bali G20 Summit)

The visa will officially launch 60-days after this announcement, with more information on the policy set to be shared in due course. Therefore, applications are not yet open on the Immigration website.

Officials Plea To Bali Government To Protect Against Risks Of Flash Floods

bali flash floodingOfficials at Indonesia’s National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB) are calling on the Bali provincial government to pay close attention to the island’s rivers. The swelling rivers that transect the Island of the Gods are showing signs of increased risk of flash flooding. (Main Article: Bali G20 Summit)

These kinds of natural disasters could prove devastating, even fatal. In light of recent flash floods, landslides, and other weather-related catastrophes in Bali, the BNPB is calling for urgent.

The Acting Head of BNPB’s Disaster Data, Information, and Communication Center, Abdul Buhari, had told the national news agency, Antara, that rivers across Bali should be assessed from source to mouth to ensure debris build-up from recent heavy rains is not blocking the flow of waters. (Main Article: Bali G20 Summit)

Muhari explained ‘When the water debit of the river is low, these [debirs] will not become a threat. However, when it rains with very high intensity, then they [the debris] will become natural dams for the water’. The debris in question is everything from fallen trees and logs, to plastic waste and leaf litter.

Muhari continued to probe the local government about what they currently knew of the situation in the field. He said, ‘Are there any blockages? Are there fallen trees that may have the potential to become natural dams when the water discharge is very high? These should be our concern’. He noted that, especially with the upcoming G20 Summit, the risk of flash flooding across Bali should be considered with extra urgency. (Main Article: Bali G20 Summit)

The BNPB is also calling on managers and operations teams at Bali’s tourist destinations, as well as local community leaders, to go and investigate the rivers close to their homes and businesses for themselves. He suggested that every time there is a downfall, when it is safe to do so, to gauge the height and velocity of the water.

bali floodingMuhari stated with confidence that Bali’s provincial government must remain vigilant throughout the monsoon season, which usually continues from early November to late March. The monsoon rains have notably arrived earlier than usual this year and with much greater severity. (Main Article: Bali G20 Summit)

He said that hydrometeorological disasters during this rainy season are of serious concern since the water buffering and water catchment areas across the island have been reduced.

This is an observation echoed by The Indonesian Forum for the Environment of Bali Province (WALHI). Last week, the organization released new data suggesting that the rapid development of agricultural land (namely rice paddies) into tourist and infrastructure developments directly impacted the increasing number of natural disasters on the island. The Director of WALHI Bali, Made Krisna Dinata shared the data with WALHI members and the press at a meeting on the 18th of October. (Main Article: Bali G20 Summit)

Dinata explained ‘The natural disasters that hit Bali are caused by the domino effect of climate change due to the increase in the earth’s surface temperature. Then welcome the conversion of land functions due to massive infrastructure development in Bali’. The research showed that in the space of four years, Bali lost over 34 million tonnes worth of water-carrying capacity in the research area alone.

bali rainTourism development in areas like Canggu and the villages around Ubud has drastically reduced the island’s agricultural land and natural water management system. What’s more, the construction of the Gilimanuk Mengwi Toll Road is set to remove even more vital landscapes that could lead to further natural disasters. (Main Article: Bali G20 Summit)

Despite recent flash flooding events across Bali, the worst being in Jembrana Regency, communities, businesses, and even tourists are rallying together to get the cleanup operation underway. Hotels, guest houses, and tourism businesses have conducted beach clean-ups in the Canggu and Sanur areas.

Bali’s newest beach club venue, Atlas Beach Club, was vocal about its support for communities in West Bali impacted by flash flooding and devastations on the 15th and 16th of October. Outreach teams donated food parcels that included over 950 kg of rice, 145 boxes of instant noodles, and 2,544 boxes of implants, along with 1,200 cans of sardines, to communities in need. Other high-profile and smaller businesses across Bali are sending their support to those in need behind the scenes too. (Main Article: Bali G20 Summit)

Over 100 Additional Staff Added To Bali Airport Immigration Ahead Of G20 Summit

g20 immigrationThe Indonesian Department of Immigration has deployed over 100 additional staff to Bali’s I Gusti Ngurah Rai International Airport ahead of the G20 Summit next month. While the national airport agency and central government have built a new VVIP Terminal building for the events in Bali, the additional staff will operate between commercial arrivals and delegations arriving at both the international arrivals halls and the VVIP terminal building. (Main Article: Bali G20 Summit)

A total of 117 staff have been sent to Bali from immigration offices across Indonesia. Officers from Palembang, Semarang, Bandung, Solo, and Jogjakarta have arrived in Bali in preparation for one of the most significant international events that the Island of the Gods has ever hosted. The Indonesian Department of Immigration has also transferred additional resources in the form of computers and other immigration-checking equipment to ensure that the whole operation runs smoothly.

The Head of the Special Class I Immigration Office at Ngurah Rai, Sugito, told reporters, ‘The addition is to speed up the flow of arrivals during the G20 Summit. The first 44 staff members have arrived, with more heading to Bali in the coming days. He continued to explain, ‘Immigration has also prepared a special immigration check counter for the G20 Summit delegation, which will be filled with 12 officers with a target of 720 immigration checks per hour. (Main Article: Bali G20 Summit)

He confirmed that immigration checks on heads of state will be held in the VVIP terminal and that ministers and high-level delegates will be welcomed into the VIP building. Diplomats, representatives, and staff who do not require higher levels of security clearance will be processed at the commercial international arrivals hall. Sugito said, ‘Kanim Ngurah Rai has carried out mapping and plotting of officers. Mobile units used for immigration checks for delegates at the VVIP/VIP level have also been prepared’. (Main Article: Bali G20 Summit)

immigration indonesiaThose arriving at the commercial international arrivals hall as members of G20 delegations will have a designated G20 2022 Immigration Check Queue. This, once again, will help ensure that commercial arrivals remain unaffected by the huge influx of G20-related foot traffic. (Main Article: Bali G20 Summit)

Sugito explained to reporters that although many high-profile members of delegations will be arriving on private charter flights, even more members of the delegations will be arriving on commercial flights. He advised commercial travelers, for example, those coming to Bali on holiday to see family or other non-G20 related business, that there are predicted to be peak times where foot traffic will be higher than usual.

This will be especially true in the days running up to the G20 Summit. The main event is being held from 15th-16th November, with many people arriving from the 8th of November and not leaving the island until the 22nd. (Main Article: Bali G20 Summit)

Sugito said, ‘For these delegates, there are those who use commercial flights, there are special flights. For delegates who use commercial flights, peak hours are usually from 14.00 WITA to 18.00 WITA; and at 20.00 WITA to 22.00 WITA [will be] busy or peak time at Ngurah Rai Airport’.

indonesian visaTravelers who will be in Bali around the G20 event are reminded that there may be road diversions, road closures, and even beach closures for VVIP press calls and field trips. While most events are being held in and around Nusa Dua, field trip events are being hosted around Bali in the days after the main summit. Travelers and locals have been advised that there will be increased police, military, and secret service presence on the streets of Bali, and there will be both uniformed and covert officers on duty.

Despite global political tensions, it remains the case that all heads of state from all of the G20 member states will be attending the summit. This includes US President Joe Biden, Chinese President Xi Jinping, and Russian President Vladimir Putin. This is in addition to Indonesian President Joko Widodo, newly appointed UK Prime Minster Rishi Sunk, Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and other key world leaders. (Main Article: Bali G20 Summit)

Ministers Pray That G20 Summit In Bali Will Be A Platform For International Peace

bali pieceMinisters and spiritual leaders in Bali have expressed their hopes that the upcoming G20 Summit will be an opportunity to create international peace. Lead organizer for the event in Indonesia, Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs and Investment, Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan, has shared his hopes that the event will be a platform for Russia to resolve their conflict with Ukraine; in essence, ending the war.

At a ceremony held in Bali on Wednesday evening at the Peninsula ITDC in Nusa Dua, Minster Pandjaitan and spiritual leaders held a traditional prayer for the event’s success. Minister Pandjaitan said, ‘later [we pray] the world’s leaders will gather here in peace, Ukraine with…Russia peace, America and China can meet [here]’. (Main Article: Bali G20 Summit)

He continued ‘President Jokowi will be a bridge to overcome these differences. These efforts will certainly be made and are being carried out, we pray for all of them’. When he was asked whether it remained the case that all world leaders from the G20 nations would be in attendance, as was confirmed a few weeks ago, Minister Pandjaitan said that he had asked all parties to pray that world leaders would attend together and in peaceful circumstances.

g20 indonesiaMinister Pandjaitan shared his appreciation for the Governor of Bali, Wayan Koster, who was also in attendance at the event. They were joined by 1200 Bali stakeholders and guests connected to the G20 Summit. A further 1,494 traditional villages and village leaders attended the ceremony online.

As the war in Ukraine rolls on, it seems that a seismic change of heart would be needed for peace to be realized within the next two to three weeks. That said, Bali is a place of spiritual healing for many, of cleansing, ritual, and reconciliation, so the hopes are perhaps not plausible. (Main Article: Bali G20 Summit)

The joint prayer was for Indonesia’s continued success and ‘glory’ while the G20 Summit goes ahead over the 15th and 16th of November. While Minister Pandjaitan wishes for Bali to be the place where Russian President Vladimir Putin and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky see eye to eye, it may be a little ambitious. (Main Article: Bali G20 Summit)

 

Man Who Robbed Australian Woman In Bali Shot By Police During Arrest

police indonesiaBali’s Badung Police announced at a press conference that they have caught a man who slashed the tires of an Australian woman in Bali and robbed her while she examined her car. Badung Police Chief, AKBP Leo Dedy Defretes told local reporters that the incident occurred on Wednesday 20th July and that the perpetrator has been remanded in police custody. The man in question has been named as M Andri Adi, 26, from Makassar, South Sulawesi. (Main Article: Bali G20 Summit)

According to the version of events shared by AKBP Defretes at the police press conference ‘The perpetrator deliberately broke the victim’s car tire using iron made from umbrella wire’. Defretes describe how Adi slashed the tires and waited for the victim to return to her car. The vehicle was parked outside the Lia Collection shop in North Kuta.

Once the driver returned to the car and drove away Adi followed behind, knowing she’d feel something was wrong with the car soon enough. Adi came along and offered to help. AKBP Defretes said ‘When the victim was careless, and the victim was tricked into seeing the rear tire of the car was flat. The perpetrator immediately took the victim’s belongings in the car and fled’. (Main Article: Bali G20 Summit)

Adi got away with a cellphone, a gold ring, and IDR 2.5 million in cash. The victim immediately alerted the police. Based on the report the police launched an investigation as quickly as they could and tracked Adi down to the Mengwi area in Badung.

Adi was paraded at the police press conference and could be seen to be limping and had a bloodied bandage wrapped around his left leg. AKBP Defretes confirmed that Adi had been shot by police during his arrest for trying to flee the scene. (Main Article: Bali G20 Summit)

crime indonesiaHe said ‘When the development of another crime scene was going to be carried out, this perpetrator tried to escape. So that decisive action is taken’. It is not unheard of for police to shoot suspected criminals who try to escape arrest, though it is uncommon. The police did not give any further information about Adi’s case. He remains in the custody of Badung Police. (Main Article: Bali G20 Summit)

Local newspapers named the victim as Rosemary Thorburn, an Australian woman living in Sanur. She shared a post on her public Facebook profile describing her version of events. In the caption of the post, she wrote:

‘…if you haven’t heard from me or if I haven’t completed a task I promised you. 1 week ago I was robbed…[they] told me to move my car forward…later to learn, over a tack they had planted…Whilst I was at back of car unloading boot bang one opened front door took bag and phone. Needless to say I’ve spent the entire week replacing cards new phone, setting it up, entire day at police station with [an Indonesian] interpreter…it’s a huge task…Also a warning to Bali friends ..Hati Hati’. (Main Article: Bali G20 Summit)

bali robberyThorburn received dozens of comments from friends. In one reply Thorburn writes ‘Can you believe one week to the day a call from 3 very happy detective…photo of my bag…worthless content…best part criminal in their hands…I am amazed’ in another she presses the ‘amazing work from Bali undercover detectives’.

Above all, it seems that Thorburn was delighted to have received back her phone with precious photos stored on it, and the gold ring which she describes as having ‘great sentiment’. (Main Article: Bali G20 Summit)

Others on the post described how they have experienced similar crimes. Another robbery crime that is often reported to Bali Police is bag snatching from tourists who are riding a moped. Although Bali is a safe place to visit, crime does exist. Anyone who is a victim of a crime is urged to contact Bali Police as soon as possible so they can bring perpetrators to justice.

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Car Free Bali – Sundays Return to Denpasar

Car Free Bali – Sundays Return to Denpasar

Car Free BaliAfter ceasing operations for two years because of the COVID-19 pandemic, “Car Free Day” has returned to the Niti Mandala Hero’s Monument Field in downtown Denpasar once a week. 

On Sunday, 18 September 2022, the four-lane road on Jalan Niti Mandala was closed to vehicular traffic from 6:00 am until 10:00 am. Like Sundays before the pandemic, “Car Free Day” was suspended two years earlier, ending an event where the public often turned out to walk, run, exercise, and ride bicycles.

Quoted by the National News Agency Antara, a Denpasar resident Koming Sukerti (48), who was jogging on the roadway with his family, said: “I am delighted (at the reopening) because I have long wanted to use our free time to exercise with my family, but this was not possible until the road was reopened again for our use on Sundays. I hope that ‘Car Free Day’ (CFD) will continue, so there is a place for young people, families, and people like me can again perform exercises in public. 

Another member of the public from Desa Lebih in Gianyar, Eka Putra Hamanda (24), said, “I enjoy the CFD that has been absent for two years and hope it will continue every Sunday morning.” He expressed his wish that the activities on the roadway and the adjoining park could also be expanded to include culinary contests, clothing exhibitions, and children’s games. (Main Article: Car Free Bali)

On Sunday, 18 September 2022, Dewi Wahyuni, who operates the Yan Renon Food Stall, reported that between 6:00 am and 10:00 am each Sunday, she targets to generate a turnover of Rp. 3 million in food Sales.

Each Sunday, 60 personnel from the Transportation Department (Dinas Perhubungan), Bali Police, Satpol PP, and Pecalang will be on hand to safeguard the CFD. (Main Article: Car Free Bali)

 

Indonesia on the Verge of Becoming Endemic

COVID IndonesiaBeritasatu.com reports that the World Health Organization (WHO) has announced that the end of the COVID-19 pandemic is at hand. In Indonesia, the pandemic is relatively under control and about to transition to an endemic phase of the disease. WHO reminds vaccination programs against COVID-19 need to be continued and intensified to ensure that the current downturn in the virus does not become an opportunity for a new variant of the coronavirus to enter

The Indonesian Ministry of Health spokesman, Dr. Mohammad Syahril, admitted that there are already regions of Indonesia that have managed to achieve 100% levels of first and second dosages and 50% levels of third booster shot administration in areas such as Bali and Jakarta. 

Based on the WHO standards, for any region to be declared “endemic,” – the parameters of success are not solely linked to vaccination levels. Dr. Syahril told Beritasatu.com on Sunday, 18 September 2022, that other parameters for qualifying for a standard of endemic regions must also demonstrate:

  1. Levels of illness and hospitalization must be below 5%.
  2. Levels of fatalities must be below 3%.
  3. The trend for the level of community transmission and infections must be below 1.
  4. The positivity rate must be below 5%.

Dr. Syahril recommends that the public follow official health protocols, especially concerning wearing masks and vaccination programs, to eliminate the disease. (Main Article: Car Free Bali)

The Indonesian representative of the Ministry of Health reminded that although there are signs that the pandemic is within reach and coming to an end, COVID-19 continues to exist, meaning that health protocols must remain in place.

To that end, Syahril explained that the “true end” of COVID-19 will depend on human behavior in Indonesia and globally. International adherence to mask wearing and vaccination must be maintained until such a time as the pandemic can be declared officially “over.

Continuing, Syahril said that WHO has given six homework assignments that must be completed to end COVID-19 finally. Adding: “If we don’t remember to keep public health protocols in place, Indonesia will lose this golden opportunity.” (Main Article: Car Free Bali)

The WHO has established six simple policies that must be followed to end COVID-19. Those six policies are:

  1. Vaccination.
  2. Testing and sequencing.
  3. Ensuring a good system is in place to treat COVID-19.
  4. Being prepared for sudden surges in new cases.
  5. Taking preventative steps to treat the disease and keep it under control.
  6. Keeping the public informed on the subject of COVID-19. 

Downloaded from data provided by the Indonesian Ministry of Health, the number of national vaccinations as of Sunday, 18 September 2022:

  •  first dosages total 204,320 (87.07%); 
  • second dosages total 170,930 (72.84%), 
  • third dosages (booster) total 62.6 million (26,68%) from a targeted audience of 234.66 million. 

Focusing on three key areas in Indonesia:

DKI Jakarta

– First Dosage: above 100% (12.67 million dosages)

– Second Dosage: above 100% (10.79 million dosages)

– Third Dosage: 53.32% (5 million dosages)

Bali

– First Dosage: above 100% (4 million dosages)

– Second Dosage: 96.47% (3.64 million dosages)

– Third Dosage: 56% (2.11 dosages)

Riau Archipelago

– First Dosage: 99.49% (1.79 million dosages)

– Second Dosage: 85.34% (1.54 million dosages)

– Third Dosages: 40.75% (734,569 dosages)

 

Restoring Peace and Quiet to Bali’s Shores

bali night spots noiseThe growing number of entertainment night spots in the Seminyak, Kuta, and Canggu corridor of Bali and the resulting noise pollution that occurs almost every night, lasting until the early morning hours, has become a source of constant anger and upset for those living in the areas.

As reported by Balipost.com, residents have published an online petition to the attention of President Joko Widod and Bali Governor Wayan Koster, demanding firm action to eliminate the general disruption and extreme noise pollution found in North Kuta – such as Batu Bolong, Brawa, and Canggu. (Main Article: Car Free Bali)

In response to these complaints and the resulting publicity, the Chief of the North Kuta Police Precinct, Police Commission Putu Diah Kurniawandari, said on Tuesday, 13 September, that his force will coordinate with the Badung Regency Enforcement Agency (Satpol PP Badung) to visit local night spots and recommend that music volume be reduced starting from 10:00 pm.(Main Article: Car Free Bali) 

Local public ordinances and zoning laws stipulate outside amplification is forbidden, limiting amplified sound to enclosed sound-proofed interior spaces, specifying curfew hours by which amplified music must cease, and a specific outside decibel limit of 70 decibels in areas surrounding Bali night spots. Other local zoning laws stipulate minimum setback distances from the shoreline for construction to preserve open public access to the seas.

Much to the chagrin of residents in this area and the general public in Bali, these rules are seldom applied or enforced by enforcement agencies, with officials disingenuously claiming they lack the proper authority to take action against violating business. (Main Article: Car Free Bali)

Meanwhile, environmentalists are blaming noise pollution in beachside areas as being destructively harmful to sea life ranging from whales, porpoises, the general fish population, and nesting sea turtles. 

A resident describes how the Batu Bolong and Brawa Beach areas of North Kuta are disturbed by open-air entertainment venues.” Every night, every weekend, every month, both before and after the pandemic, people report they cannot sleep at night. After 10:00 pm, noise booms out from open-air bars adjacent to sacred Balinese temples. The noise makes windows and doors vibrate. It’s worse than an earthquake.” The resident continued, saying the noise pollution happens every night until 1, 2, 3, or sometimes 4 am. (Main Article: Car Free Bali)

Online Petition

The online petition published at Change.org originated by P. Dian on behalf of the people of Bali and, particularly, the people living in the Canggu. The petition area addressed to Indonesian President Joko Widodo, the chair of the PDIP Parti Megawati Seokarnoputri, Bali Governor Wayan Koster, the Regent of Badung Regency I Nyoman Giri Prasta, the chairman of Parisada Hindu Dharma Indonesia (PHDI) Major General (Ret) Wisnu Bawa Tenaya, working chairman of PHDI-Bali Nyoman Kenak, traditional chiefs (kelian) in Canggu and Berawa, the provincial head of Bali Enforcement Agency (Kasatpol PP Provinsi Bali) Dewa Nyoman Rai Dharmadi, and the head of Kasatpol Badung I Gusti Agung Ketut Suryanegara. (Main Article: Car Free Bali)

The petition has accumulated more than 8,000 petitioners and remains online, still garnering more signatures at Change.org .

One petitioner commented: “We sincerely request the government immediately enact strict regulations with official and severe sanctions, with strict monitoring by the Public Order Enforcement Officers. We can no longer remain silent because our beautiful island of Bali can still be saved. Rioters are obliterating our sacred culture for the sake of their businesses solely at the expense of the interests of thousands of other people and the ‘basic human rights of most people to rest,” one petitioner wrote.

“Other countries have formal rules that forbid loud amplification after 10:00 pm. In these locales, violators are subject to strong penalties and can even have their businesses closed, licenses revoked, and doors sealed,” said a police spokesman. (Main Article: Car Free Bali)

bali nightlife noiseResidents also complain that the beach area is becoming known for outrageous and immoral acts, causing many local people to abandon their homes in search of more peaceful surroundings. Petitioners cited a pattern of actions at area bars, including public intoxication, public sex acts, and urinating on temple grounds. (Main Article: Car Free Bali)

Police officials and residents cite the growing number of new large beach clubs with capacities for thousands of tourists as the worst contributors to sound pollution. One new open-air night spot – Atlas Fest – is Asia’s largest beach club and entertainment center. Finns Beach Club – one of several competitors – claims to have hosted 10,000 guests for its 2021 New Year’s Eve Party.

In response to the petition getting international press coverage, the head of the Badung Enforcement Agency (Kasatpol PP – Badung), I Gusti Agung Ketut Suryanegara, announced his office would coordinate with the Provincial Government of Bali on the extent of any violations committed by the night spots. These investigations will specifically focus on Home Affairs Minister Directive No. 42 of 2022 and Bali Governor Regulation No. 16 of 2016, which regulates amplified sound. (Main Article: Car Free Bali)

Generally, acceptable maximum continuous sound levels in residential areas are 55 DBA – a decibel level roughly equivalent to the sound of a vacuum cleaner. Business and entertainment areas increase the maximum sound level to 70 DBA – a decibel sound level compared to the sound of a dishwasher or washing machine.

Currently, restaurants and bars are allowed to remain open until 2:00 am, stipulating that volume levels will be dramatically reduced starting from 10:00 or 11:00 pm. (Main Article: Car Free Bali)

What The Petition Says

bali noise pollutionThe petition is still available for signature at change.org and addressed to both national and provincial leadership, made the following points:

∙ The people of Bali, including those in the Canggu area, who have suffered during the COVID-19 pandemic, are now suffering after the pandemic from the practices of beachside night spots.

∙ Bali’s reputation as a place of beauty, spirituality, and culture is threatened by the behavior and practices of “loud, rowdy bars, beach clubs, night clubs, with ugly behaviors happening right next to our residences and next to sacred Balinese temples.”

  • The petitioners are joining forces to prevent Bali from being “obliterated from the face of the earth before it is completely too late.”
  • “The booming sound from open bars in both Batu Bolong and in Brawa, next to Balinese holy temples, is so loud that it makes the windows and doors vibrate. Worse than an earthquake. This noise disturbance lasts every night until 1 am, 2 am, 3 am, and some bars even until 4 am!
  • Despite some enforcement efforts by local law officials, the noise levels in the area are now “worse than ever.” (Main Article: Car Free Bali)

∙ These continuing activities deny the basic human rights of restful nights and are causing “thousands” of people, including Balinese residents, expats, and foreign and domestic tourists, to abandon Canggu and Bali, vowing never to return. (Main Article: Car Free Bali)

∙ Bali is becoming “a place of insane noise pollution with the sound of loudspeakers blaring from bars till almost dawn, combining with the sound) of motorbikes and shouting drunken tourists.”

  • ”Many of these clubs and bars are directly adjacent to temples, including “Pura Kahyangan Jagat’” which are among some of the most sacred in Bali. And next to these temples, indecent and disrespectful acts have been occurring, including drunkenness, sexual behaviors, urinating in the temple walls area, and the possible consumption of illegal substances. 

∙ There are frequent fights and speeding drunk motorcyclists have ended in fatal accidents. Some bars built directly on the beach also cause environmental problems due to their proximity to the sea.” (Main Article: Car Free Bali)

∙ The petitioners are calling on the government to pass and enforce strict regulations that include severe sanctions. Satpol PP must diligently monitor these rules.

The Indonesian Minister of Tourism and the Creative Economy announced he was imminently flying to Bali to personally survey the situation and to meet with officials and community members

 

Troubled Bridges Over Bali Waters

bali bridge repairRadarBali.com reports that repairs on three major bridges on Jalan Gatot Subroto Timur, targeted for completion on 31 December 2022, may have suffered a major setback.  The bridges span major river gorges on the road that connects Bali’s east and west coast across Denpasar north. (Main Article: Car Free Bali)

Repairs and upgrades on three bridges are budgeted to cost Rp. 109 billion.

Portions of the bridge construction over the Ayung River reported suffered a collapse on 23 September 2022.

Following the collapse, an observer on zoning and infrastructure who is also a senior professor in the Technical Faculty at Bali’s Udayana University, Dr. Ir. Putu Rumawan, has expressed his concerns, questioning the quality of the concrete being used on the bridge. (Main Article: Car Free Bali)

The partial collapse of the Ayung River Bridge occurred on Thursday, 22 September 2022, during a rain storm while a heavily loaded truck filled with sand was crossing the gorge. The contractor employed to repair the bridge recently complained of high fuel costs and the burden of constructing retaining foundations to protect local temples.

Professor Rumawan focused on the continuing passage of vehicles over the bridge still in the process of repairs and reconstruction. “It is difficult to undertake constructions on a bridge still open to traffic. I am worried that the concrete will crack, exposing the interior steel strengthening rods to corrosion, resulting in an overall weakening of the structure,” he said.

 

Looking for a WWII ship wreck “USS Liberty” dive on Bali island?

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Domestic Travelers in Bali

Domestic Travelers in Bali – Latest Rules 2022

Domestic Travelers in Bali – Latest Rules 2022

Domestic Travelers in BaliPT Angkasa Pura, the state-owned company that manages Bali’s Ngurah Rai Airport, has published the new travel guidelines for air travel following a circular memorandum issued by the Ministry of Transportation (SE 77 of 2022) covers travel during the continuing COVID-19 pandemic.

The General Manager of Bali’s Airport, Handy Heryudhitawan, told Radarbali.com that he was assuring the public that there would be no obstacle to implementing the new travel guidelines. “Implementing the memorandum SE 77 travel regulations will not change passenger flows at the Airport, and there will be no backloads or accumulation of passengers or operational problems at I Gusti Ngurah Rai Airport,” said Herydhitawan on Tuesday, 16 August 2022. (Main Article: Domestic Travelers in Bali)

From January to July 2022, Bali’s Ngurah Rai Airport served 5,612,677 domestic and international passengers, with passenger flows continuing upward. Reflecting what has been labeled as “low season” and higher ticket costs, domestic and international passengers are now averaging around 20,000 each day, down from a daily average of 28,000 in July.

“I hope the new travel guidelines will not affect traffic flows at Bali’s Ngurah Rai Airport,” added Herydhitawan.

SE 77 sets the following new guidelines:

  1. Every domestic air traveler must use the Government’s online health certification application PeduliLindungi.
  2. Domestic air travelers aged 18 and above who have received a complete vaccination program, including a booster shot, are NOT required to present proof of a negative RT-PCR or rapid antigen test.
  3. Domestic air travelers aged 18 and above who have only received the first and second COVID-19 vaccine must show proof of a negative RT-PCR performed within 3 x24 hours of departures.
  4. Domestic air travelers aged 6 – 17 years who have received both the first and second vaccination are NOT required to present a negative test result from an RT-PCR or rapid test antigen.
  5. Domestic air travelers aged 6-17 years who have only received the first vaccination or have received no vaccination are required to present proof of a negative rapid test antigen performed within 1 x 24 hours of travel or a negative RT-PCR test performed within 3 x 24 hours of travel.
  6. Domestic air travelers aged 6-17 years who have not been vaccinated and are arriving in Indonesia on an international flight are required to show a negative rapid test antigen performed in 1 x 24 hours of travel or an RT-PCR performed 3 x 24 hours of travel.
  7. Domestic air travelers suffering from specific health conditions or comorbidities preventing them from undergoing vaccination are exempted from government rules on immunization. They must present proof of a negative RT-PCR performed 3 x 24 hours of travel. This group is also required to submit a letter from a doctor or Government Hospital stating the traveler is unable to under vaccination against COVID-19.
  8. Domestic air travelers under the age of 6 years are exempted from vaccination requirements and are not required to present proof of screening by RT-PCR or rapid test antigen. Travelers under the age of 6 years must be accompanied by an adult who has satisfied the COVID-19 vaccination and screening tests outlined in the government deadlines.

Handy added that vaccination service is available at a special facility at Bali’s Ngurah Rai International Airport. This service has been open since 07 July 2022 and operates from 9:00 am until 3:00 pm. (Main Article: Domestic Travelers in Bali)

 

Bali Hosts World Tourism Day on 27 Sept

world tourism day 2022Indonesia has won the privilege to be the global host of the 42nd World Tourism Day, which falls on 27 September 2022.

Quoted by Kompas.com, the Indonesian Minister of Tourism and the Creative Economy, Sandiaga Uno, said: “For the 42nd edition of World Tourism Day, Indonesia has received the honor of being named host with the headquarters for the global celebration to be Bali on 27 September 2022.

The tourism minister announced during his weekly online press briefing on Monday, 08 August 2022.

Sandiaga reminded everyone how World Tourism Day for 2022 has adopted the theme of “rethinking tourism” that encourages the re-surveying of what constitutes quality and sustainable tourism. Meanwhile, the Tourism Ministry’s acting deputy for resources and tourism institutions, Frans Teguh, commented that the theme of “rethinking tourism” needs to be embraced across Indonesia. Adding: “As hosts (for World Tourism Day), we need to agree with other nations that we (all) want to encourage tourism enterprises to develop a tourism model that is people-oriented, quality-oriented, and sustainable.”

Bali’s role as the host for the global celebration also entails the hosting of related events. These events will include panel discussions led by Bali tourism practitioners on “Rethinking Tourism as a Key Element on Recovery” and “The Tourism We Want.

In the run-up to World Tourism Day on 27 September, the Ministry of Tourism says seminars, competitions, community projects, and clean-up campaigns will be held nationwide. (Main Article: Domestic Travelers in Bali)

 

Bali Terrorist Umar Patek Early Release?

Bali TerroristInternational media is focusing on the planned imminent early release from prison of Umar Patek (50), the convicted bombmaker in the Bali Bombing of 12 October 2002 that killed 202 people, including 88 Australians, 38 Indonesians, 23 Britons, and 53 others, spread across 20 other nationalities. At least 209 others suffered severe injuries in the attack. (Main Article: Domestic Travelers in Bali)

Patek’s release forms part of a long-standing Indonesian program to reintegrate into mainstream society former terrorists now professing a personal reformation. Patek’s proposed release at this time would fall just short of the 20th anniversary of the murderous attack and represents a total of two years’ sentence reduction for the East Java man. (Main Article: Domestic Travelers in Bali)

Channel 9 Australia quotes Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese: “This will cause further distress to Australians who were the families of victims of the Bali bombings. We lost 88 Australian lives in those bombings.” Adding: “His actions were the actions of a terrorist, and they did have such dreadful results for Australian families that are ongoing, the trauma which is there.”

The Australian Prime Minister is reportedly making “diplomatic representations” to the Indonesian leadership to discuss Patek’s planned early release and other issues, including the fate of Australians sitting in Indonesian jails. The Prime Minister said Patek’s release from prison is “abhorrent.”

The Indonesian prison system typically grants sentence reductions in conjunction with the Nation’s Independence Day (17 August) or on religious holidays. (Main Article: Domestic Travelers in Bali)

The head of the provincial office of the Ministry of Law and Human Rights, Zaeroji, told the Associated Press that Patek has received a five-month reduction in his sentence for good behavior and could subsequently be released in August 2022. Zaeroji said prisoners in Indonesian prisons are eligible for early release if they meet the legal requirements. Explaining: “While in prison, he behaved very well, and he regrets his radical past, which has harmed society and the country, and he has also vowed to be a good citizen.”

A former member of the militant Islamic terrorist group, Jemaah Islamiyah, Patek, was arrested in Pakistan in 2011 and extradited to Indonesia, where he stood trial and was convicted for his involvement in the 2002 bombing. In 2012 he was sentenced to 20 years for murder and bomb-making in connection with the Bali terrorist attack and a Christmas Eve attack on a church in 2000. (Main Article: Domestic Travelers in Bali)

Bali TerroristThe anger of many members of Australian society is disagreeably palatable. Erik de Haart, an Australian, who helped evacuate victims from the Bali bombsite, speaking on the Australian TV program Sunrise, questioned the Indonesian justice system that allows a man who has killed and injured hundreds, like Patek, to go free and the execution of Australian citizens Bali Nine members for simply smuggling drugs and who had demonstrated regret and remorse during their pre-execution imprisonment. (Main Article: Domestic Travelers in Bali)

De Haart added, “This guy’s responsible for the death of over 200 people, and he gets released early because he was a good boy in jail? Please. Anyone can pretend to be de-radicalized—but, at the end of the day, he made a weapon that killed 202 people, including 88 Australians. And, you know, 10 years? Is that enough? … He doesn’t deserve to be given a good-behavior release”.

De Haart has joined a substantial chorus of fellow Australians calling for Australia to take a harder line with Indonesia, including rejecting a billion-dollar loan being extended by Australia for COVID-19 recovery.

Jan Laczynski, a survivor of the bombings, interviewed by Channel 9, said that many Australians would be “devastated” by Patek’s release. “This guy should not be going out unsupervised, unmonitored,” he said. (Main Article: Domestic Travelers in Bali)

 

Bali Police Bust Online Gambling Racket

Bali Police BustA police strike force headed by the chief of the Denpasar Precinct, Police Commissioner Bambang Yugo Pamungkas, raided a fourth-floor meeting room in an unnamed hotel on Jalan Kartika Plaza in Kuta Bali at 8:00 pm on Saturday, 13 August 2022, suspected to be the headquarters of an illegal online gambling operation.

When police arrived at the scene, the conference room was empty. Police seized four computers, four operating units (CPU), seven routers, and four handphones. (Main Article: Domestic Travelers in Bali)

As reported by Balipost.com and Beritabali.com, Police Commissioner Yugo told the press that police came to the location following reports from local citizens and the hotel’s management, who were suspicious of activities taking place in the hotel’s Orchid Meeting Room. Yugo confirmed that the Head of the Bali Provincial Police has ordered a crackdown on online gambling and that his officers continue reviewing the material gathered from the suspected gambling center.

The hotel’s management confirmed that the meeting room had been booked and used over the past several weeks. Police believe the party renting the conference room were locals currently sought by police. (Main Article: Domestic Travelers in Bali)

Travel+Leisure: Bali 3rd Best Island

Kompas.com reports that Travel + Leisure has published its list of the “25 Best Islands,” naming the Island of Bali as the World’s 3rd best.

Domestic Travelers in BaliIn an online poll conducted from 25 October 2021 until 28 February 2022, the sophisticated readership of Travel + Leisure were asked to rate their favorite travel experiences, from destinations to hotels, attractions, and transportation providers.

The list of favorite holiday islands was based on Travel + Leisure reader reviews on the friendliness of native populations, local cuisine, tourist activities, panoramic views, and quality of beaches. (Main Article: Domestic Travelers in Bali)

The Travel + Leisure global list of the 25 best holiday islands for 2022 and accompanying scores:

  • Ischia, Italy                               94.61
  • Maldives                                   94.44
  • Bali, Indonesia                        92.51
  • Milos, Greece                         92.50
  • Fiji                                            92.38
  • Galapago, Ecuador                  92.00
  • Phuket, Thailand                     91.90
  • Dominica                                 91.00
  • Boracay, the Philippines        90.89    
  • Cape Breton, Canada              90.88
  • Palawan, the Philippines       90.81
  • Paros, Greece                           90.62
  • Azores, Portugal                       90.48
  • Phu Quoc, Vietnam                 90.25
  • Moorea, French Polynesia    90.24 (Main Article: Domestic Travelers in Bali)
  • Cebu, the Philippines              90.12
  • Ibiza, Spain                               89.89
  • St. Vincent and Grenadines 89.79
  • Madeira, Portugal                    89.78
  • Maui, Hawaii, USA                   89.55
  • Anguilla, UK                              89.43
  • Crete, Greece                            89.40
  • Mackinaw Island, Mich, USA     89.10
  • Hawaii, USA                               88.53
  • Kiawah, South Carolina USA 88.49

2 Holiday Inns Seized on Kuta Beach, Bali

holiday innTeams from the Attorney General’s office have seized the assets of an Indonesian businessmam Surya Darmadi located across three provinces of Indonesia – Jakarta, Bali, and Riau,

As reported by Sindonew.com, Darmadi is currently charged in a corruption case involving Rp. 78 trillion in two separate cases. One is the result of allegations of malfeasance by the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) involving the change in the status of jungle land in Riau. The second case alleges Darmadi, via his company PT Duta Palma Group in Riau, illegally usurped land measuring 37.095 hectares. (Main Article: Domestic Travelers in Bali)

In Bali, as reported by Balipost.com, Prosecutors have taken action based on a ruling made by the Denpasar High Court (Nomor: 5/Khusus/Pen.Pid.Sus-RPK/2022/PN/ Dps). Prosecutors seized a parcel of land held by PT Menara Perdana measuring 26,730 square meters on Kuta Beach occupied by the Hotel Holiday Inn Resort Bali and the adjacent Hotel Holiday Inn Express Bali.

Another parcel of land in Kuta comprising 2,000 square meters owned by the Duta Palma Group has been seized as part of the corruption case. (Main Article: Domestic Travelers in Bali)

The case also includes a 4,470 square meters parcel on Jalan Rasuna Said in South Jakarta, a piece of land measuring 9,271 square meters, and a building on Jalan Gatot Subroto in South Jakarta. 

In Riau, the government has seized a piece of land measuring 10,944 square meters on which stands a building operated by PT Duta Palma in Pekanbaru.

State Prosecutors seized the lands in three separate provinces of Indonesia in a continuing criminal case for money laundering against businessman Surya Darmadi originating with his Palm Oil business (PT Duta Palma Group). (Main Article: Domestic Travelers in Bali)

Gala G20 Cultural Dinner to be held at GWK

bali g20 summitBali’s iconic Garuda Wisnu Kenaca Cultural Park (GWK) Lotus Pond has been selected as the venue for the welcoming cultural dinner for at least 20 heads of state and related delegations expected to attend the G20 Summit in Bali in late November 2022.

As quoted by NusaBali.com, Andre Prawiradisastra, the head of marketing communication and events for GWK, told the press on Saturday, 20 August 2022, that preparations for the prestigious November dinner have reached the 80% level.

Among the items being prepared for the G20 Summit Dinner at GWK in November is the renovation of the entrance gate, creating new steep access roads. Andrew confirmed these three main preparatory steps with other projects, including CCTV surveillance installation and enhanced public area lighting. (Main Article: Domestic Travelers in Bali)

Various government ministries and agencies are helping GWK prepare for the big event. This includes the Ministry of Public Works and Public Housing. Andre added: “Everything must be ready by September. But, by August, President Joko Widodo may come to check that all is clean and ready.”

Andre warned the public to expect the popular GWK Cultural Park to be closed for three days before the event, from 16 -18 November 2022, and 2 days after the gala dinner. 

 

Main Article: Domestic Travelers in Bali – Latest Rules 2022

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