Indonesia’s Statistical Agency (Badan Pusat Statistik, or BPS) announced at the start of February 2023 that it had recorded a total of 5.47 million foreign visitor arrivals in full-2022. It means Indonesia managed to achieve its foreign visitor target (quite easily) last year (which was set at the wide range of 1.8 – 3.6 million).
It also forms an impressive 251.3 percent year-on-year (y/y) jump from the 1.56 million foreign visitor arrivals that visited Indonesia one year earlier.
However, we do need to remember that growth comes from a very low base as the COVID-19 crisis has done structural damage to Indonesia’s tourist numbers.
These 5.47 million tourist arrivals are still miles away from the 16.11 million tourist arrivals who visited Indonesia in 2019, the year when COVID-19 was yet to make its devastating appearance. So, as we have emphasized repeatedly over the past couple of years, we expect it to take at least three more years for tourist arrivals to recover.
This slow recovery of Indonesia’s tourism industry is a problem because it means missed opportunities for Indonesia’s economic and social development (particularly in those regions that are highly dependent on tourism, such as Bali).
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