Badung, Bali (ANTARA) - Indonesian Tourism and Creative Economy Minister Sandiaga Salahuddin Uno expressed optimism that the participation of US businessman Elon Musk in the 10th World Water Forum in Bali will help attract more foreign tourists to Indonesia.

"By him (Elon Musk) visiting here, Indonesia will attract more international tourists to come, especially to Bali," Uno remarked on the sidelines of the forum in Nusa Dua, Bali, on Monday.

The minister said he is grateful for Musk's visit to Bali, as the CEO of SpaceX and Tesla had to cancel his participation at the G20 Summit in November 2022 in the province.

"Back in 2022, he did not come. However, this year, he is here. We are very grateful for this," he stated.

Earlier, in Denpasar City on Sunday (May 19), Musk said that he was invited to attend the 10th World Water Forum to give a speech at the opening of the triennial global forum.

He also made the most of his visit to Bali to take part in the launch of the satellite-powered internet service of Starlink, a subsidiary of SpaceX. The internet service is expected to provide reliable internet access to health centers located in Indonesia's remote areas.

Meanwhile, according to data presented by Statistics Indonesia (BPS), the number of international tourists visiting Indonesia last year stood at 11.7 million. The figure significantly surpassed the 5.4 million tourist visits recorded in 2022.

Of the 11.7 million international tourists visiting Indonesia in 2023, some 5.7 million were visiting Bali, which is currently hosting this year's World Water Forum themed "Water for Shared Prosperity."

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Translator: Dewa Ketut, Tegar Nurfitra
Editor: Anton Santoso
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