Deputy governor still hoping Bali restarts international tourism in July

Bali deputy governor Tjokorda Oka Artha Ardhana Sukawati. Photo: Bali provincial government
Bali deputy governor Tjokorda Oka Artha Ardhana Sukawati. Photo: Bali provincial government

Optimism is still running high among Bali officials that the island will reopen to foreign tourists next month, with the province’s deputy governor among those who’s hoping that the plan doesn’t change.

“Until now there has been no changes, we are still planning for July. Our target is [to reopen to foreign tourists] in July,” Tjokorda Oka Artha Ardhana Sukawati, or Cok Ace, said

Earlier in March, President Joko Widodo and Tourism and Creative Economy Minister Sandiaga Uno suggested that Indonesia may reopen to foreign tourists by mid-2021. Since then, officials have been prepping COVID-19 “green zones” for tourists in Bali while accelerating the island’s vaccination program. 

In recent weeks, however, the central government seems to have shifted its focus towards the Work From Bali initiative, which suggests that a delay on the international tourism timeline may be expected. 

“We realize that the final decision is in the hands of the central government. But we from the [local] government, people, and industries in Bali are hoping for a July reopening,” Cok Ace added. 

The deputy governor claims the province has been serious in handling the COVID-19 outbreak in Bali, noting its progress in vaccinating the population, enforcing health protocols, and certifying different businesses with health and safety standards. 

Read Also Bali needs 3.3 million COVID-19 vaccine doses to reach inoculation target

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