Jakarta (ANTARA) - Indonesia's President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) announced that Indonesia's halal tourism industry has been ranked number one in the world at the Global Muslim Travel Index (GMTI) 2019. The GMTI report ranks 130 Muslim traveler destinations globally, including Indonesia, Malaysia, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Morocco, and Brunei.

For this, it assesses four key factors, namely access, communication, the environment, and service.

"According to the Global Muslim Travel Index (GMTI) 2019, Indonesia's halal tourism has been ranked first. This is an excellent achievement. It's just [been] announced," Jokowi said at the inauguration of Halal Park, Gelora Bung Karno (GBK) stadium complex, here on Tuesday. The Halal Park is an area that offers halal food, beverages, and other Islamic lifestyle products.

Among those present at the inauguration were State Enterprises Minister Rini Soemarno, Religious Affairs Minister Lukman Hakim Saifuddin, Chairman of the Creative Economic Agency (Bekraf) Triawan Munaf, and CEO and founder of HIJUP Halal Park Diajeng Lestari.

"Our sukuk (sharia compliant bond) is growing very large. Last month, our retail sukuk of SR011 series was sold at Rp2.1 trillion. This is the trust we must maintain in attracting new investors," Jokowi said.

As the world's largest Muslim majority country, Indonesia must benefit from the development of halal tourism that has grown fast, he added.

Indonesia has set a target of attracting five million foreign Muslim tourists in 2019, or a quarter of its total target of attracting 20 million foreign tourists, or a 42 percent increase from last year's target.

Halal tourism has been designated as the main driving force behind Indonesia's tourism industry in general, according to the President.

In 2018, there were 140 million Muslim tourists with a total online spending capacity of 35 billion US dollars. The number is expected to rise to 158 million Muslim tourists in 2020.

"It means there is a market segment that Indonesia should exploit; moreover, our country has the largest Muslim population in the world," he said.

The global projection shows that the demand for halal products in 2019 would reach 3.7 trillion US dollars, he added.

Meanwhile, Lestari said that the market share of halal products in Indonesia in 2017 was 2.1 trillion US dollars.

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Translator: Desca L Natalia, Fardah
Editor: Azizah Fitriyanti
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