Marketplace Platforms Not Allowed to Become Umrah Providers: Religious Ministry

By Office of Assistant to Deputy Cabinet Secretary for State Documents & Translation     Date 21 Juli 2019
Category: News
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TawafMinistry of Religious Affairs has announced that umrah (minor hajj) service must be operated by the Umrah Service Providers (PPIU) while development of the so-called ‘digital umrah’ service is optional.

“Digital umrah is developed in the spirit to improve management standards to meet the people’s needs in this digital era. Therefore, umrah providers are also required to continuously innovate by making use of information technology,” said the Ministry’s Director of Umrah and Special Hajj Development Arfi Hatim after a meeting with representatives from marketplace platforms Traveloka and Tokopedia and Ministry of Communication and Informatics in Jakarta, Friday (19/7).

According to Arfi, the meeting is part of the Ministry’s efforts to develop the use of information technology on Umrah service.

During the meeting, he also called on all relevant parties to comply with regulations, namely Law Number 8 of 2019 on Umrah and Hajj, adding that Traveloka, Tokopedia or other marketplace platforms may not become umrah service providers.

Arfi added, that the meeting also agreed to establish a task force related to the development of digital umrah. The task force, he pointed out, is expected to respond to the disruption of innovation in the digital era, including changes in business models, business processes and business ecosystems.

Ministry of Religious Affairs and Ministry of Communication and Informatics, he added, will also continue to harmonize the policy.

In the meantime, Ministry of Communication and Informatics has the authority to regulate the unicorns, while Ministry of Religious Affairs has the authority to regulate the umrah providers, he added.

“The harmonization aims to create a healthy business climate while ensuring that Muslims can perform umrah properly,” Arfi said, adding that the Government is open to inputs from stakeholders in formulating  the right policies.

For the record, Ministry of Religious Affairs previously held another meeting on 24 June to discuss measures on improving the quality of umrah services.

The meeting issued four following recommendations, namely to strengthen law enforcement through a coordinated supervision by related government ministries/agencies and deployment of special investigators, to establish a task force consisting of the Government and business sector to respond to Saudi Government’s policies, to develop a reliable digital platform, and to minimize problems by stipulating umrah providers’ internal regulation and improving public awareness. (Humas Kemenag/ES)

Translated by: Ridwan Ibadurrohman
Edited by: Ersan Pamungkas

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