JAKARTA – The Central Statistics Agency (BPS) noted, foreign tourists (tourists) from the Middle East experienced the most significant growth compared to other countries in June 2019. When compared with June 2018, growth reached 37.95 percent, from 26,500 people to 36,500 people.
Meanwhile, compared to the previous month, the growth rate was higher, namely up to 531.8 percent. The number of Middle Eastern tourists in May 2019 was only 5,800.
BPS head Suhariyanto explained, from several Middle Eastern countries, Saudi Arabia’s tourists experienced the biggest growth on a monthly basis, reaching 1,002 percent “But, I don’t know the reason,” he said in a press conference at his office, Jakarta, Thursday (1/8).
In BPS records, the number of Saudi Arabian tourists in June 2019 was 26,400 people. Whereas in May 2019, the number was only 2,400 foreign tourists.
This growth was the biggest compared to other Middle Eastern countries such as the United Arab Emirates and Kuwait, which respectively rose 315.96 percent and 536.45 percent compared with the previous month. Meanwhile, Egypt only grew 174.77 percent in the same period.
In general, Suhariyanto said, the number of foreign tourists visiting Indonesia in June 2019 was 1.45 million visits. When compared with June 2018, that number has increased by 9.94 percent, while compared to May 2019, the growth was 15.48 percent.
Suhariyanto explained, the increase was due to June becoming a month with a long holiday period due to the Eid and the change of the school year. In addition, June is also approaching peak season in July.
“Of course, we hope that this figure will continue to rise in July,” he said.
Of the total 1.45 million visits, air access is the largest entry point for foreign tourists, with up to 832 thousand visits. That number rose 1.81 percent compared to the number of foreign tourists visiting the same period in the previous year.
The highest increase was recorded at Sultan Iskandar Muda Airport (Aceh) which reached 41.08 percent followed by Husein Sastranegara Airport, West Java, 36.59 percent.
Cumulatively from January to June 2019, foreign tourists visiting Indonesia reached 7.83 million visits. The figure is up 4.01 percent compared with the same period last year. Suhariyanto rate, government policies through the Ministry of Tourism to attract foreign tourists to Indonesia have begun to bear fruit. Especially in terms of marketing in a number of countries, including through exhibitions.
Suhariyanto explained, the government would continue to make efforts to increase the number of foreign tourists. This is because the government projects that Indonesia’s economic growth can be driven more by sectors that are not based on natural resources.
“Including tourism and the creative economy,” he said.