Widespread Economic Hardship Experienced in All Parts of Bali
- Widespread Economic Hardship Experienced in All Parts of Bali
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Data provided by the Indonesian Tourism Board (GIPI) and quoted by Kompas.com states that tourism growth has declined 100% in April 2020 as compared to the same month one year before.
Commenting on the disastrous impact on the Island's economy, Bali's deputy governor Tjokorda Oka Sukawati says that his Province is among the areas that have suffered the most economically from the COVID-19 Pandemic. Speaking at a tourism industry roundtable, Tjokorda noted that 60% of Bali's Domestic Regional Product is linked to tourism activities.
Citing just one example, the deputy governor stated how the Island's agricultural sector is driven by food and farming products purchased to support 140,000 hotel rooms that are now left vacant by the COVID-19 crisis. "These rooms are now empty, and the farmers have an oversupply of crops," said Tjokorda.
Bali is now on virtual lockdown with visits by foreigners temporarily banned via a tightening of visa and immigration regulations. Underlining the current "emptiness" is the cessation of commercial flight operations for the period 24 April 2020 until 01 June 2020.
Reflecting on two terrorist bombings that occurred in Bali in 2002 and 2005, the deputy-governor said the current COVID-19 crisis was, in fact, much worse and has brought to a standstill both small, medium, and large-scale enterprises in Bali. The 2002 and 2005 bombings caused drastic downturns in visitor numbers, but business activities continued to flow and rebuild over time.
Whether as a matter of course or reflecting some degree of inadequate record-keeping, the total number of COVID-19 infections and fatalities remains relatively low when compared to other destinations in Indonesia and abroad.On an island where tourism fuels the economy - life and business remain mainly at a standstill.