Image: President Jokowi meets with vaccine front liners at Harris Hotel Sunset. Credit: FB Sandiaga Uno.
President Joko Widodo indicated that Bali tourism could be re-opened in July 2021 if the Covid-19 pandemic conditions were getting better.
The President conveyed this in a limited discussion with Bali tourism industry stakeholders, who were participating in the Covid-19 mass vaccination program at the Harris Sunset Road hotel, Kuta on Tuesday afternoon (16/3/2021).
During the discussion, the President gave a signal that if the Covid-19 cases were under control, health protocols were strengthened and testing and vaccinations boosted, tourism could reopen around June-July 2021.
“As long as everyone supports it and they remain careful, in July we will be open again,” said Jokowi quoted from the video release, Tuesday.
This was also emphasized by the Minister of Tourism and Creative Economy, Sandiaga Uno. Sandiaga told press that he hoped that Bali tourism can reopen in June or July 2021. “Of course, if the Covid-19 rate is under control,” Sandiaga said.
Sandiago also told the press that he is continuing to push for a five year tourist visa for digital nomads, who have become a greater tourist market around the world in the past year.
During the pandemic, work habits have changed around the world, with thousands now being able to work from anywhere they like and only needing good communication infrastructure. And Bali, according to Sandiaga, has exactly that; excellent internet facilities and services, plus an enormous worldwide popularity.
He hoped that working foreign tourists will make Bali their second home, but of course, paying attention to the legality of the residence permit. Sandiaga said that he is still currently formulating a long term visa plan with the Directorate General of Immigration, Ministry of Law and Human Rights.
“Long term visas are the main concern for more people in the digital nomadic world to consider making Bali their second home,” said Sandiaga
Sandiaga imagines that these long-term foreign tourists can work while living in the island’s beautiful natural scenery and receiving the best services that Bali offers. “Working in Bali and not far from the beach, is a great attraction for foreign tourists,” he said. “And they are supported by a very friendly culture and society.”
The ‘work from home’ trend during the Covid-19 pandemic has ramped up the changes in this market dramatically and Bali sits well to take advantage of it, as other countries such as Croatia have done recently by creating a special visa for these long-term working tourists.
It could be said, the race for the digital nomad market is now on for struggling tourist-dependent countries around the world.