Sorong, Southwest Papua (ANTARA) - The 2023 Tanah Papua Wonder Festival is an opportunity to boost and showcase Papua's tourism potential, according to the Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy.

The festival marks the beginning of the future economic progress of Sorong district, Southwest Papua, director of Nusantara tourism marketing at the ministry, Dwi Marhen, said here on Wednesday.

"This event offers a great opportunity for Sorong district to introduce its potential," he added.

According to him, the festival will seek to optimize the region's potential by introducing it to the public, hence, attracting more tourists in the future.

"This activity is very good so it needs to be done regularly because only through events like this, the region's potential will be famous," he said.

The ministry is targeting 7.4 million foreign tourist visits this year and 1.4 billion domestic tourist movements.

It will take seven movements of Indonesia's total population of 275 million to reach the 1.4 billion movements target, he highlighted.

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According to him, optimizing the movement of Indonesian tourists is aimed at anticipating the global economic recession.

"The target is for one person to spend Rp2.4 million for transportation, hotel stays, souvenirs, and so on," he informed.

If 1.4 billion movements are achieved and each tourist spends Rp2.4 million, he said, there will be Rp3,210 trillion (around US$218 billion) circulating in the tourism and creative economy sectors.

Based on a survey, he said, the first reason tourists come to Indonesia is to see its cultural arts, not only nature.

"Southwest Papua is very rich in culture. The local government must present unique Papuan cultural attractions, and I think that will attract tourists," he added.

Foreign tourists also come to Indonesia to experience spectacular moments, he said.

"Like this festival; so not only beautiful sceneries attract tourists," he explained.

He then asked local governments to hold touristy events that can attract the attention of travelers.

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Translator: Yuvensius B, Kenzu
Editor: Jafar M Sidik
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