Indonesia Tourism Remains Attractive for Investors says Investment Board

The Jakarta Post reports that the Investment Coordinating Board (BKPM) feels that Indonesia remains attractive for foreign investors, especially in the tourism sector, which will continue to be a key contributor to investment growth.

BKPM chief Thomas Lembong said his office was confident that the realized investment target of Rp 592 trillion (US$43.97 billion) would be met this year, and therefore a larger goal could be set for 2017.

He added that one of the major sectors expected to boost cash inflows was tourism as reportedly, foreign investors had expressed the most interest in tapping into Indonesia’s underdeveloped but promising tourism sector.

“Tourism shined in the eyes of several investors who came to Jakarta for the Forbes Global Conference,” was quoted Thomas by the Jakarta Post.

Indonesia is seeking to spur significant growth in the tourism sector in a bid to lure 20 million tourists a year by 2019, nearly double the current figure of 11 million per year expected this year.

To make people venturing beside the iconic island of Bali, the government is working on developing ten other destinations, spread all across the world’s largest archipelago. It includes among others Lake Toba in North Sumatra, Borobudur Temple in Central Java and Thousands Islands in Jakarta.

The World Bank’s latest Indonesia Economic Quarterly Report declared that tourism was a promising field that could generate significant private investment for the nation.

In the first half of this year, Indonesia received $858.7 million as investment poured into the sector.

According to Thomas, BKPM may roll out new measures to lure more investment in the near future, but no details could be disclosed as plans were still being discussed with offices of coordinating ministers and the Presidential Office.

“From the BKPM’s side, what we can do is sort out issues relating to regional administrations. I have already spoken to the Home Ministry, which holds power over the regional bodies, so that the BKPM’s technical requests can be fulfilled in order to boost investment in those areas,” he said to the newspaper.

In the past two years, the investment body has launched several initiatives to improve its service to potential investors, most notably one-stop integrated service centers to ease the process of applying for a business permit.

Around Rp 453 trillion in investment has been realized in Southeast Asia’s largest economy from January to September, up 13.4 percent from 2015.

Another sector that can help attract investment and will be looked at after the next year is the creative economy industry, which Creative Economy Agency chairman Triawan Munaf called an excellent contributor to Indonesia’s gross domestic product (GDP) growth. Thomas also added that the culinary and fashion sectors, which are parts of the creative economy, were also formidable factors in propping up exports and imports and thereby potentially increasing investment opportunities.