The Indonesia government will issue a stimulus package worth 25 trillion Rp (1.68 billion USD) to recover the local tourism industry after the COVID-19 pandemic.
Head of the ministry’s Fiscal Policy Department (BKF) Febrio Nathan Kacaribu said at an online press briefing on May 13 that tourism was one of the sectors hardest hit by the medical crisis, with no less than 1.4 million workers forced to take leave or sacked.
The stimulus will be disbursed once Indonesia resumes its economic movements, he said.
“By quarter three, people will anticipate traveling, as they have been quite bored at home. That’s why, we will prepare a stimulus for tourism, restaurants, transportation. Hopefully, there would be more in the fourth quarter,” he said.
Among the stimuli are discounted airline tickets to certain travel destinations, as well as tax incentives for hotels and restaurants.
Febrio said the package is an attempt by the government to increase the consumption rate of the middle class.
Febrio said that the COVID-19 pandemic has suspended the life of the tourism sector, causing consumption growth in the first quarter to decelerate to just 2.8 percent. It is expected that consumption will decline further in the second quarter as the government implements large-scale social restrictions in a number of major cities.
The number of international tourist arrivals to Indonesia in March plunged by 64.1 percent compared to the same period last year, to 470,898, the lowest level in a decade./.