The Indonesian Embassy in Seoul invited key tourism officials Friday to show appreciation for their donations toward relief efforts in Indonesia following a devastating earthquake and tsunami that hit the country last year.
“I sincerely appreciate the movement and heart of the Korean tourism industry, including the Korea Travel Business Association, the Seoul Metropolitan Government and the Korea Tourism Organization,” Indonesian Ambassador to Korea Umar Hadi said.
He said that he hopes Korean tourists will travel to Indonesia again, as the tourism infrastructure is now operating normally.
In a bid to boost tourism, the Indonesian government has launched the development of areas of new tourist destinations that are expected to be the new Bali.
The government selected 10 tourist destinations as a development priority. They include Lake Toba, Belitung, Tanjung Lesung, the Thousand Islands, Borobudur and Mount Bromo.
Indonesian President Joko Widodo is aggressively pushing tourism in the belief that the sector can emerge as a top source of foreign exchange for the government, as it struggles to contain a widening current-account deficit.
The country is targeting to attract 20 million foreign tourists this year and foreign exchange earnings of about $20 billion, according to Indonesia’s Tourism Ministry.
In 2018, Indonesia witnessed several devastating events, including the 7.5 magnitude earthquake that struck the Palu region of the country. The powerful quake triggered a tsunami and left thousands of people killed.