Hey Indo ! – In order to restore the tourism sector in Indonesia, which was slumped by the COVID-19 pandemic, Indonesia discussed the option to remove quarantine for foreign tourists (tourists). One of them is by implementing the Vaccinated Travel Lanes (VTL) scheme.
This was discussed when President Joko Widodo or Jokowi attended the 13th Indonesia-Malaysia-Thailand Growth Triangle (IMT-GT) Summit on Thursday (28/10/2021).
Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs Airlangga Hartarto said the number of foreign tourist arrivals in the three Southeast Asian sub-regional countries had fallen drastically from 40 million visits to 8.2 million visits. As a result, state revenues from the tourism sector also fell from the previous USD 29.7 billion to USD 6.2 billion.
Reporting from beritabali.com – Suara.com network, Airlangga said Jokowi and leaders from Malaysia and Thailand agreed to push the travel corridor. One way to do this is by implementing the Vaccinated Travel Lanes (VTL) scheme which frees quarantine obligations for foreign tourists who have been vaccinated.
At the 13th IMT-GT Summit, Airlangga said that the Prime Minister of Thailand had stated that his country had created a regulatory sandbox, that foreign tourists who had been vaccinated no longer needed to undergo a quarantine period when visiting Phuket.
“It has been in effect in July, and it is a lesson for Indonesia. It can be seen that the number of tourists and foreign exchange generated for the surrounding community has increased,” he exclaimed.
Even so, Airlangga stated, the Indonesian government did not want to arbitrarily implement the policy. This is evidenced by the mandatory quarantine policy for arrivals from abroad, as well as the inclusion of PCR results for traveling by plane.
“Of course we can learn from what Malaysia and Thailand have done, we have started to open in Riau Islands and Bali. Of course we will learn. But we are still implementing quarantine and also PCR,” he said.
“We have not differentiated based on vaccination. There are discussions outside the IMT-GT with Singapore regarding VTL. This is certainly a new standard that is considered to be able to encourage recovery in the tourism sector,” concluded Airlangga.