The regional government in Indonesia is marketing two new tourist attractions that are expected to drive an increased tourist flow to the nation.
Announcing its development plans, the West Nusa Tenggara (NTB) regional government said that it was planning serious moves to increase tourism to the region. The government said that it was aiming to increase the count of tourists to Lombok and Sumbawa by two million annually by 2015. The government is taking the initiative following the success of the Visit Lombok-Sumbawa 2012 campaign, which saw one million domestic and international visitors arrive in the nation during the first 11 months of this year.
NTB tourism and culture director, Lalu Gita Ariyadi, while speaking at the Lombok-Sumbawa Travel Fair in Jakarta last weekend, said, ‘The domestic market holds the biggest potential for Lombok, and we expect it to contribute 65 percent of arrivals, with the rest from the international market.’ Ariyadi also said that international tourists made up 25 percent of total inflows to these two regions this year.
The department also said that it was creating new campaigns to make itself attractive in the international tourist market. One example is that the NTB government and the regional tourism promotion board are to organise sales missions to Malaysia, Saudi Arabia, China, Hong Kong, Singapore and Australia next year. Additionally, two events that will commemorate the 200th anniversary of Mount Tambora’s eruption are also to be held in Sumbawa in 2015.
Ariyadi said, ‘MICE has been an important market in achieving the one million mark, and we will continue to boost it. A number of investors have shown their interest in developing a convention centre in Lombok and we are in the process of selection now.’
He also hoped that Garuda Indonesia, which recently began Makassar-Lombok services, would operate more direct flights to the destination. He also said that the department was talking with airlines, including Tiger Airways Australia, to run services between Australia and Lombok, especially from Perth.