The Tanjung Pulisan-Likupang KEK will be developed in an area measuring 396 hectares.
"Once again, I said earlier that many tourists would visit here, and many more if we are ready. Hence, it needs integrated work between the central government and regional administrations at the levels of municipality, province and district. (They) must be connected," he said.
The planned special economic zone would be built on both private and government lands. The government is determined to solve the land acquisition problem in order to attract investors, he remarked.
North Sulawesi needs many more hotels as travel agents and airways have informed that many tourists would come, pending for the province's readiness, Jokowi said.
The government would help construct roads and prepare land spatial to support the KEK development, he stated and added that ongoing construction of toll road in the province is expected to be completed in October 2019.
A limited meeting would be held Thursday evening to discuss the KEK development, he said. Among those to attend the meeting would be Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs Darmin Nasution, Agrarian and Spatial Minister Sofyan Djalil, North Sulawesi Governor Olly Dondokambey, concerned district heads and mayors.
Meanwhile, the number of foreign tourists visiting the province between January and May 2019 reached 55,144 people, an increase of 9.67 percent from 50,284 as compared to the January-May 2018 period.
The foreign tourists constituted those from China (86 percent), Singapore (two percent), Germany (two percent), the United States of America (1.3 percent), and other nations.
North Sulawesi has been dubbed 'The Rising Star" in the tourism sector by the Tourism Ministry because it has managed to increase its tourism growth by 600 percent over the last four years.
The number of foreign tourists visiting North Sulawesi, particularly Manado and Bitung was recorded at 20 thousand in 2015, which increased to 40 thousand in 2016, 80 thousand in 2017, and 120 thousand in 2018.
The number of domestic tourist arrivals also rose from two million to four million. It shows an increase of 200 percent, while other regions only recorded an increase of five to 10 percent.
While visiting North Sulawesi, Jokowi was flanked by First Lady Iriana, Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs Darmin Nasution, Cabinet Secretary Pramono Anung, Public Works and Public Housing Minister Basuki Hadimuljono, Transportation Minister Budi Karya Sumadi, Agrarian and Land Spatial Minister Sofyan Djalil, Justice and Human Rights Minister Yasonna Laoly, and North Sulawesi Governor Olly Dondokambey.