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The governor of Bali, Made Mangku Pastika held a meeting with 33 consul generals and honorary consuls from various countries on Wednesday (4/10). In the meeting, he explained the latest situation on Bali, the various possibilities that may occur with Mount Agung and ensured them that Bali is still safe.

Mount Agung is still on ‘Beware’ status, but the mountain’s seismic activity has declined. “Even if the eruption occurs, our disaster management control is prepared as well as possible,” he said.

He ensured there would be no casualties because the 12 km area from Gunung Agung had been evacuated of people. In addition, the Bali government had installed sophisticated tools that can detect an eruption very early.

“There are five countries that have published travel warnings for their people coming to Bali, but it does not mean there is a travel ban. It’s more like if they come to Bali, be aware, be careful. I just asked the consuls to take it back, remove the warning. They seemed to agree and they didn’t have any questions,” he told reporters.

If the airport is closed due to a Mount Agung eruption, he predicts there will be 5,000 passengers who cannot depart. Therefore it will have an impact on visas when it comes to foreign citizens.

For that his side will take care of visas and accommodation. Even if pressed to leave, the foreign nationals will be flown through Surabaya or Lombok. “We will prepare the transport and we will take care of the tickets,” he said.

Pastika hoped that with this meeting and explanation tourists will not delay or cancel their flights to Bali.

Honorary Consul of New Zealand, Indy Siddik indicated that insurance companies are now not providing cover for force majeur incidents. This means that his government has informed its citizens, if they come to Bali they do so at their own risk.

Nevertheless, New Zealand tourists keep on coming. 700 people were said to arrive from New Zealand just yesterday, both for business or travel.

Even with the present condition of Mount Agung, a decrease in tourist arrivals from New Zealand has not been seen. According to Siddik, this is because New Zealand has many volcanoes and its citizens are well accustomed to them. “Usually Air New Zealand flies three times a week bringing 750 people,” he said.

The Honorary Consul of Denmark, IA Ratna Sutamaya had a different experience and said he was busy answering questions from Danish citizens who planned to visit Bali or work in Indonesia. “Denmark is a small country of only six million inhabitants. So you don’t see a lot of them coming to Indonesia or Bali,” he said. However, there has been a decrease in the number of visitors from Denmark. Before the Agung status was risen, Danish citizens numbered more than 300 on the ground. The decline has rapidly reached 30-40 percent. “They have started canceling and some are postponing. Typically, Danish citizens rarely come in groups, usually solo. We cannot guarantee it will be safe,” Sutamaya said.

Since Denmark doesn’t have any volcanoes, it isn’t so easy to calm them on the subject. He also finds it difficult to answer the many questions on when Mount Agung will erupt and how dangerous it will be.

But he can only try to calm them by explaining that the Government of Bali has prepared well, including providing a private number that can be contacted for current information on Mount Agung.

(Wasn’t it Pastika who announced a state of emergency on Bali last week? Ed.)

Image:  YouTube

Showing 19 comments
  • Karen Geaney
    Reply

    Irresponsible for governments not to have a warning about potential risk and irresponsible of the Governor to not understand and provide pertinent information pertaining to risk. Yes foreign media are engaging in an over dramatisation of current events however the opposite can be just as damaging. What is realistically underpinning his request. … I think we know the answer to that. .

    • Angie Bryce
      Reply

      Huge effect on Bali economy… yes ….but that involves peoples lives here….which is geared to tourism….

  • Ian Johansson
    Reply

    Not entity familiar with the mechanics of the Balinese Gods but don’t They have the concept of Hubris?

  • Stuart Beat
    Reply

    I think the point is they don’t need to go too far before something actually happens and you may as well have a 24/7 warning on stepping out of your house, let alone your country, the way the world is nowadays.

    • Ian Johansson
      Reply

      Well, volcanic eruptions are a little different. Since airliners can’t fly through the ash clouds, the potential disruption and logistics do warrant some extra consideration.
      It’s not like tourists can take a ferry, train or car home like they did in Europe some years ago when the Iceland volcano shut down European airspace in a zone larger than Bali, Lombok and Java combined!

    • Stuart Beat
      Reply

      Well according to the expertos, the prevailing winds should take the ash north west if it erupts tomorrow. And why can’t tourists take a ferry to continue their holiday in Java or Lombok and then catch a plane home just like Iceland? Plenty of ferries around and all part of the adventure.

    • Morriss Darren
      Reply

      He’s going to cover visas and any other bits and pieces.. Yeahhh right.

    • Ian Johansson
      Reply

      Sounds like Mr. & Mrs. Darren Gobgoyne from Wagga Wagga might have got a little more adventure than they asked for, Stuart!
      Again, if we compare with the Iceland volcano, the Gobgoynes would have to travel overland or by sea to Singapore (or Dili) in order to get back to Wagga Wagga.
      And remember: there are a LOT of tourists in Bali!
      The idea of getting them ALL out in buses in case of a no-fly situation sounds cute but I STRONGLY doubt that it would work as advised.
      Finally, the lovely, cool winds that are coming from Aus and giving us such gorgeous August/September seasons are getting less predictable as we get closer to Xmas.
      Soooo… all in all a little caution and a few less tourists are perfectly fine until we know if shit’s gonna blow!

    • Andrea Dixon
      Reply

      How many people are canceling their Vegas trip?

    • Andrew de Jong
      Reply

      Andrea Dixon friends live there they say it’s quiet

  • Paolo Bali
    Reply

    ah ah ah…..oh really??? why is he asking??? dont tell me they are realizing that the volcano emergency irresponsibly communicated is effecting tourism……I’m surprised they realized it so fast…they should not worry as the island is not relying on tourism and travel industry.

    • Sophie Digby
      Reply

      And just to think you could get run over by a van on a bridge or shot at a music concert elsewhere… geez this volcano really upsetting the status quo… (apologies if I offend any of those affected by human actions)

  • Arlo Sinclair
    Reply

    OK, for the volcano maybe, but what about all the street crimes, day to day cheating, and general animosity towards foreigners?

  • Alistair Toyne
    Reply

    Hannah Hoad

  • Jess Kirley
    Reply

    Is there a travel warning for visiting Vegas also?

  • Angie Bryce
    Reply

  • Angie Bryce
    Reply

    Not for Bali in general

  • Paolo Bali
    Reply

    a bit too late…..20 days late more ore less

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