Minister Eyes Tourist Visits from Australia, US to Anticipate Decline of Chinese Tourists
Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy seeks tourist visits from Australia and the United States to anticipate travel restriction in China due to the outbreak of coronavirus.
“Based on machine learning, Australia and the United States are the top two countries that show great interest to visit Indonesia,” Minister of Tourism and Creative Economy Wishnutama Kusubandio told reporters after joining a Limited Meeting at the Presidential Office, Jakarta, Tuesday (28/1).
Australia made 600 million internet searches about tourism in Indonesia, while the United States made more than 500 million searches.
“(The United States) has great potentials but there are not any direct flight (from and to Indonesia), nor excessive promotion,” the Minister said.
According to the Minister, Indonesian tourism should not depend only on the visit of one certain country. Once one problem (coronavirus) emerges, we were taken aback, he added.
Regarding the impact of coronavirus, Wishnutama stated that there are only 50,000 tourist visits from Wuhan City, China.
“Nevertheless, we are not talking about the city alone since the Government of China also tightens its regulations,” the Minister said, adding that the Ministry in its tourism strategy started looking other potential tourism market to countries which has been less considered by Indonesia.
Also on that occasion, Wishnutama also confirmed that all flights to and from Wuhan City are canceled since the city was locked down.
“I had discussed with Bu Retno (Minister of Foreign Affairs) yesterday. She told me that the Indonesian Foreign Affairs Ministry has issued a travel advisory in yellow status for China. Yellow means cautious, read means no travel. The status for Hubei Province (in which the capital is Wuhan) is no travel,” he said.
The Minister stated that he will continue to communicate with Minister of Foreign Affairs regarding travel warning to China and to always study and monitor the latest situation from the World Health Organization (WHO). (FID/EN)
Translated by : Rany Anjany
Reviewed by : Yuyu Mulyani