Wednesday, 11 December 2019 | 06:35 WIB

Tourism Supports National Economic Growth despite Natural Disasters

Head of BNPB Doni Monardo (bnpb)

JAKARTA, NETRALNEWS.COM - The tourism industry in Indonesia is recognized as providing total national foreign exchange (forex) proceeds value of up to IDR 190 trillion last year. This amount places tourism in second place after forex earnings from palm oil exports, which reached Rp 239 trillion. However, the tourism industry, that may be affected by natural disasters, can still continue to be developed given the extraordinary beauty of the archipelago.

Looking at foreign exchange receipts, Head of the National Disaster Management Agency (BNPB) Doni Monardo said that tourism is a locomotive for national economic growth.

Doni conveyed the statement in a discussion with the theme ‘Hospitality Sector Disaster Preparedness for the Sustainable Tourism Industry at Graha BNPB, Jakarta, Monday (05/06/2019).

However, Doni said that Indonesia was also an area prone to potential hazards. Indonesia has 500 volcanoes, of which 127 are active volcanoes. Not to mention, Doni reminded that the earthquake cycle has different periods but cannot be predicted in a timely manner, as happened in Aceh, Jakarta and Palu.

"The fault is beautiful areas. Like it or not, happy not happy, this is the face of our region, "said Doni.

Also present at the discussion were representatives from the hotel and tourism businesses in the DKI Jakarta, West Java and Banten regions. During the discussion session, BNPB presented speakers from academics, Bali Province BPBD, Bali Indonesia Tourism Development Corporation (ITDC), Indonesian Association of Hotels and Restaurants (PHRI), and Hard Rock Hotel Bali.

According to Doni, the world of tourism must understand disaster management such as increasing disaster trends. According to him this can be used as a reflection for tourism management to adapt to change.

Touching on the potential danger threat in the archipelago, Doni said that natural events are expected not to disrupt the tourism sector. With these conditions, BNPB expects tourism industry players to emphasize the need for efforts such as prevention and mitigation. Doni stressed, "Get to know the threat, prepare the strategy. Ready for Congratulations. "

Data from BNPB in January to April 2019 recorded that 1,586 disasters occurred and claimed 438 lives and lost. A number of these incidents, 98% were hydro-meteorological disasters such as floods, landslides and tornadoes.

Doni said that tourism actors have an important role in disaster management. Through pre-disaster efforts, tourism managers can provide information to tourists or even train their workers' preparedness. Doni also offers tourism actors to make efforts to mitigate vegetation against hotels or inns near the coastal area, such as tree planting which serves to reduce the impact of the tsunami.

According to data compiled by BNPB, disaster is a capital shock that significantly erodes the amount of capital and the value of physical capital. The tsunami in the Sunda Strait on December 22, 2018 caused losses of up to hundreds of billions. The disaster also caused a domino effect such as the cancellation of tourist visits by up to 10%. Before the tsunami, the occupancy rates of hotels and inns in the tourist areas of Anyer, Carita, and Tanjung Lesung reached 80-90%.