Minister of Tourism Arief Yahya stated here on Thursday that the term "new Bali" is an idiomatic expression being used with the expectation that the offered new destinations would attract as many tourists as those visiting Bali Island.
The ten prioritized tourism destinations in 2016 are Lake Toba (North Sumatra), Belitung (Bangka Belitung), Tanjung Lesung (Banten), Seribu Islands ( Jakarta), Borobudur Temple (Central Java), Mount Bromo (East Java), Mandalika Lombok (West Nusa Tenggara), Komodo Island (East Nusa Tenggara), Wakatobi National Park (Southeast Sulawesi), and Morotai (North Maluku).
Meanwhile, Bali is one of Indonesias iconic tourism destinations, which attracts some four million tourists a year, or 40 percent of the total tourists visiting the country.
"Bali is a destination that already occupies a prestigious spot on the worlds tourism map," Minister Yahya stated.
However, the ten prioritized destinations will not be developed to resemble Bali as each of them has distinct characteristics.
"They each have their own combination of nature and culture to offer. Such diversity will make us rich in terms of the attractions, culture, and traditions. The uniqueness of each region can be explored," Yahya remarked.
The government intends to boost the number of foreign tourist arrivals, which is expected to reach 20 million by 2019.
Meanwhile, data from the Central Statistics Agency (BPS) revealed that the Indonesian tourism industry grew by 7.2 percent last year, well above the global average of 4.4 percent.
Moreover, the number of tourist arrivals in Indonesia last year exceeded the government-set target of 10 million.(*)