Tourism Minister seeks to develop health, herbal tourism

Tourism Minister seeks to develop health, herbal tourism

Minister of Tourism and Creative Economy, Sandiaga Salahudin Uno. ANTARA PHOTOS/Galih Pradipta/rwa/aa

Almost every year, domestic tourists spend more than US$11 billion on health tourism abroad
Jakarta (ANTARA) - Minister of Tourism and Creative Economy Sandiaga Uno has said that his ministry will develop medical as well as fitness and herbal tourism programs given their large market share.

"Almost every year, domestic tourists spend more than US$11 billion on health tourism abroad," he noted at a virtual weekly press conference, held by the ministry here on Monday.

Therefore, several areas such as Jakarta, Medan, and Bali will be promoted as health tourism destinations in the early stages and the concept will later be expanded to other destinations, he added.

The ministry will collaborate with various agencies from other ministries and private sector groups, such as the Indonesian Medical Tourism Association, to support health tourism in Indonesia, he informed.

Indonesia already has good health tourism potential, which can be further developed to allow the nation's hospitals to compete with hospitals abroad, Uno said.

"For example, Eka Hospital for spinal or spine care. The hospital is the only hospital in Southeast Asia that has German-made medical devices,” he added.

Furthermore, he said that in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic and the economic challenges posed by it, efforts to increase resilience in the domestic health industry are very necessary.

One of the strategies to increase such resilience is to promote health tourism, with efforts in the early stages focused on domestic tourists, and in the next stage on foreign tourists, he observed.

Meanwhile, fitness and herbal tourism, he said, also have a very large market share, especially in Bali.

"Many foreign tourists have even often come to Bali to do fitness-based tourism and herbal tourism, especially for aesthetics and cosmetics. Therefore, improving the quality of human resources must be done through reskilling and upskilling to provide services with even higher standards,” the minister added.

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