Kuching, Malaysia (ANTARA News) - The Indonesian Ministry of Tourism held a coordination meeting with the Sarawak government, Malaysia, to optimize events in border areas in a bid to achieve the target of attracting foreign tourists in 2017.
"To optimize events in border areas, we involve various parties, such as the Consul General of the Republic of Indonesia in Kuching, the border provincial tourism office, the tourism office of the district or city in the border region, and the government of Sarawak," Head of Promotion of Cultural Tourism at the Ministry of Tourism Ni Putu Gayatri remarked on the sidelines of a coordination meeting held to optimize border events in Kuching, last Monday.
Gayatri said development in border areas had become one of the priorities of President Joko Widodos administration.
"President Joko Widodo wants to start development from the border areas in an attempt to revive the economy in the frontier, outermost, and remote regions," she stated.
The Ministry of Tourism continues to promote cross-border tourism, as it can create new destinations.
One of the efforts is holding a coordination meeting at the Imperial Hotel, Kuching, Malaysia, on October 23, 2017.
The meeting was also attended by Consul General of the Republic of Indonesia in Kuching Jahar Gultom, Head of the West Kalimantan Provincial Tourism Office Kartius, Deputy District Head of Sambas Hairiah, Sanggau Youth and Sport Agency Head Fransiskus Meron, Regional Secretary of Kapuas Hulu Muhammad Sukri Sulaiman, and a representative of the Sarawak Transportation Agency Hilary Boha.
She said the coordination meeting was aimed at aligning the vision and mission of all stakeholders involved in promoting border tourism.
"The meeting also called on the Sarawak government to offer citizens ease in crossing the Malaysian State Border Post," she said.
Gayatri said Indonesias border region holds vast potential, as it has natural beauty, cultures, and culinary delicacies.
In addition, tourism can be one of the means to improve the economy of the community, she said.
In 2016, some two million tourists from border areas had visited Indonesia.
Meanwhile in 2017, the number of foreign tourists is targeted to increase to 2.5 million, while in 2018, the target will be raised to 3.146 million.
The tourism ministrys deputy minister for overseas promotion I Gde Pitana earlier said that 217 events had been prepared in the cross-border area.
In Riau Islands, Batam and Bintan still attract the highest number of foreign tourists. With 110 activities lined up, Batam and Bintan are projected to attract 2.187 million foreign tourists, followed by 35 events prepared for four regions in East Nusa Tenggara and expected to record 399 thousand foreign tourists.
A total of 12 events have been readied in five regions of Papua, and 169 thousand foreign tourists are expected to arrive through Papua.
Some 28 events have been prepared in five areas of West Kalimantan, with a target of 155 thousand foreign tourists.
Riau has planned 22 events in four regions, with a target of 139 thousand foreign tourists.
North Kalimantan, with two border areas, has readied three events with a target of 82 thousand foreign tourists.
Meanwhile, North Sulawesi, with three border areas, has prepared seven events, with a target of 13 thousand foreign tourists. East Kalimantan has set a target of drawing two thousand foreign tourists.
Source: ANTARA News