The Tourism Ministry is bringing eight tourism players to the International Travel Expo (ITE) in Hong Kong set to run from June 15 to 18 in a bid to promote Indonesian destinations to the Hong Kong market.
“Hong Kong contributed 83,830 to the total 12,023,971 foreign tourists who visited Indonesia in 2016,” said the ministry's deputy minister for Overseas Promotion, I Gde Pitana.
At this year’s ITE, Indonesia's booth will be designed to resemble a phinisi (the traditional two-masted sailing ship of the South Sulawesi Bugis people) to highlight the archipelago's charecter as a maritime nation consisting of more than 17,000 exotic islands.
“[Indonesia will also present] traditional dance performances, Indonesian dishes and coffee at the booth,” said the ministry's deputy assistant for Asia-Pacific Tourism Promotion, Vinsensius Jemadu.
According to Central Statistics Agency (BPS) data, Indonesia welcomed 20,074 tourists from Hong Kong between January and March this year; an 11.9 percent increase from 2016.
As part of this year's target to attract 15 million foreign tourists, the government is seeking to lure up to 2,453,000 tourists from Greater China, including 132,000 from Hong Kong.
“Hong Kong is a very strategic market for the Wonderful Indonesia [tourism brand]. 60.8 million tourists visit Hong Kong per year, 60 percent of which are from mainland China,” said Tourism Minister Arief Yahya.
Hong Kong is also near Macau, which welcomes 35 million tourists a year, most of whom are also from mainland China.
The ministry is currently supporting the opening of more direct flights from Hong Kong to Jakarta, Denpasar and other cities.
“The percentage of direct flights to Indonesia is only 37 percent, while the remaining 63 percent are transit flights that make a stop in Singapore, Kuala Lumpur or Hong Kong. Our accessibility is still low in comparison to Thailand and Malaysia that have an average of 80 percent direct flights. This technical issue is what we’re going to pursue in Hong Kong,” added Arief. (kes)