Sabtu, 12 Oktober 2019

West Sumatra readies to hold 11th Tour de Singkarak by Fardah

West Sumatra Province is gearing up to implement its iconic sports tourism event of Tour de Singkarak (TdS), the international cycling race, scheduled on November 2-10, 2019.

The route for the 11th edition of the TdS will be expanded this year for the first time to also cover Jambi Province.

Offering prizes amounting to Rp2.3 billion, TdS is the biggest international cycling race in Indonesia that has promoted tourist destinations in West Sumatra, so far.

Foreign and domestic cyclists participating in TdS are entertained with local traditional dances and culinary delicacies, with the hopes that they would one day return to Indonesia with their families and friends as well as share their experiences on social media.

"TdS has a high media value, so its implementation will affect the promotion and image of tourist destinations in West Sumatra and Jambi," Tourism Minister Arief Yahya stated.

This year, West Sumatra is optimistic of attracting 58,447 foreign tourists and 8.4 million domestic tourists.

This year, West Sumatra is promoting 49 major tourist attractions, of which three have been included in the “Calendar of 100 Wonderful Events” managed by the Tourism Ministry.

The three main tourism events are Pasa Harau Art And Cultural Festival, Tour de Singkarak (TdS), and Minangkabau Cultural Festival.

Taking a cue on new capital city design from Canberra by Fardah

Indonesia is looking to Australia’s capital Canberra as a reference for its capital city in East Kalimantan, part of Kalimantan or Borneo Island where its remaining tropical rainforest, often called “the world’s lung,” remains intact.

Over 50 percent of Canberra, known as the Bush Capital, is gazetted as a national park or reserve. Green spaces are scattered across the city, and kangaroos regularly grace Canberra’s suburban streets. This is in line with the Joko Widodo (Jokowi) administration's aspiration to realize a smart and forest capital city and leave behind crowded and polluted Jakarta.

For materialization of the plan, the Indonesian government establishes cooperation with the University of Griffith, according to the Environmental Affairs and Forestry Ministry. The design will be drafted through cooperation and collaborations among various domestic and foreign parties, including the Griffith University in Australia, Agus Justianto, head of the ministry's research and innovation development department, revealed on Oct 11, 2019.

In fact, the government had initiated cooperation with Griffith University since 2002. The renewed agreement was inked by Justianto and Deputy President of Griffith University Professor Sarah Todd in Brisbane, Australia, on Oct 10, 2019.

The existing cooperation has resulted in the formation of a Centre of Excellence for Sustainable Development for Indonesia (CESDI), which was founded in February 2007. The CESDI's mission is to build capacity for more sustainable development and environmental management in Indonesia and across the region. Its main focuses encompass the application of SDG principles, low-carbon development initiatives, and climate resilience in the next capital city.

"Through this cooperation, the CESDI can make the new capital city in East Kalimantan a laboratory for sustainable development at the footprint level," he stated.

The Environmental Affairs and Forestry Ministry confirmed that the design of the new capital city, to be located in East Kalimantan, will apply the principles of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Sabtu, 21 September 2019

NIAS ISLAND PREPPED TO ENGAGE INTERNATIONAL SURFERS, TOURISTS by Fardah

Sabtu, 21 Sep 2019 11:09
Daerah : Jakarta
Jakarta (ANTARA) - With the international maritime event of Sail Nias 2019 being organized from July to September 2019, the government is stepping up the promotion of Nias Island as a surfing haven for international visitors.

The Indonesian government’s steadfastness to transform Nias into a global tourist destination gateway was echoed by Coordinating Maritime Affairs Minister Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan while officially opening Sail Nias at a peak ceremony held at the Teluk Dalam Seaport, South Nias District, North Sumatra Province, on Sept 14, 2019.

Various activities organized during the event included the Wonderful Nias Expo 2019, battleship parade, Nias Marathon, culinary bazaar, and traditional art and cultural performances.

Other activities comprised Wind Surfing and Sailing Contests, Free Diving Competition, Stone Jump Festival, Coffee Festival, Fishing Tournament, Wonderful Tourism Photo Expo, One Thousand Tents Festival, the Mt Sitoli cultural seminar, and Traditional Fishing Boat Parade, with the participation of some 100 fishermen boats.

A ceremonial stone jump tradition is the icon of Nias and has already gained popularity among travelers. The stone jump tradition was born along with the Nias War Dance. Since primeval times, tribes in Nias would oftentimes clash among themselves, and the chief (siulu) of every tribe trained their young members for war; stone jumping being part of the training.

The 2019 Sail Nias event involved four districts and a city on the island of Nias, specifically Gunungsitoli City and the districts of South Nias, West Nias, Nias, and North Nias.

It unveiled Nias Island as the best-kept secret of Indonesians to the world.  Among the top secrets of Nias Island is Sorake Beach, recognized as the second-best place to surf, after Hawaii.

FOREST FIRE SMOG PLAYS SPOILSPORT IN TOUR DE SIAK IN RIAU by Fardah

Sabtu, 21 Sep 2019 15:47
 
Jakarta (ANTARA) - The Tour de Siak (TdSi) organizing committee apparently overlooked the weather factor while deciding to hold the event this September, the peak of the dry season that is dryer than usual due to El-Nino.

Since August 2019, Riau Province, where Siak District is located, has been hit by forest fires emanating smog that has blanketed cities and choked millions of people, especially infants and children.

In spite of the disaster, the organizing committee of TdSi decided to go ahead with the race held on September 19-22, 2019.

Some 54 cyclists, grouped in 11 domestic and foreign teams, are participating in the Seventh TdSi international cycling race 

The domestic teams comprise the BSP Siak Cycling Team, KFC Cycling Team, KGB Cycling Team, and Indonesia's National Team. The foreign participating teams constitute the Terengganu Inc Tsg Cycling Team of Malaysia, Global Cycling Team of the Netherlands, Velofit Team of Australia, Foolad Mobarakeh Sepahan team of Iran, Nex Cycling Team of Singapore, Kinan Cycling Team of Japan, and Go For Gold Team of the Philippines.

Bianka Zarco, an official of the Global Cycling team from the Netherlands, after arriving in Siak on September 18, remarked that his team had visited Riau to win, though soon came to the realization that the smog would pose a challenge and was concerned over its health impact.

Selasa, 27 Agustus 2019

KALIMANTAN FOREST TO REMAIN INTACT DESPITE CAPITAL DEVELOPMENT by Fardah

Selasa, 27 Ags 2019 20:07
Daerah : Jakarta
Jakarta (ANTARA) - The Joko Widodo (Jokowi) administration has assured that the development of the capital city will not damage the environment and vowed that East Kalimantan forests will remain intact.
This comes after the government announced that parts of North Penajam Paser and Kutai Kertanegara Districts in East Kalimantan Province would be the location for the country’s new capital expected to be inaugurated in 2024, the year when Jokowi’s second term will end.
President Jokowi told the media August 26, 2019 that the two districts were selected, as they faced the least risks from natural disasters, including floods, earthquake, tsunamis, forest fires, and landslides.
Moreover, they are strategically located in the heart of Indonesia and near Balikpapan and Samarinda that are developed cities. Hence, basic infrastructure and facilities already exist. Besides, the government owns 180 thousand hectares of land there.
The decision to move from Jakarta was based on a three-year study conducted by the government.
"The results of the studies concluded that the ideal location for a new capital city will be part of North Penajam Paser District and part of Kutai Kartanegara District in East Kalimantan," President Jokowi, who has been re-elected for the 2019-2024 term, noted.
The work is expected to start in 2021 and cost up to Rp466 trillion (US$32.3 billion) to be covered by the State Budget (Rp74.44 trillion), Public-Private Partnership scheme (Rp265.2 trillion), and private investment (Rp127.3 trillion).
Relocating the capital city in Kalimantan has triggered debates on both sides. The island, also known as Borneo, is considered “the lung of the world” as it is home to vast forests that help absorb CO2.

Senin, 26 Agustus 2019

Refugees stranded for years in Indonesia, feel neglected by Fardah

Haydee Alnoori, 40, his wife, and five children, one Jakarta-born, demonstrated with Iraqi refugees, brandishing “We are Iraqis marginalized” papers before the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Jakarta office on Aug 22.
"We are marginalized. We came here six years ago. My children face an unknown future,” Alnoori informed the media.

Alnoori stated that his youngest son, born in Jakarta as a refugee, had no nationality, as he had yet to be listed on either the Indonesian or Iraqi government’s population document.

The Iraqi refugees staged protests on several occasions and claimed to have negotiated with the UNHCR a fortnight ago and had ended the demonstration to give it some time, but to no avail, as the UN body neither took concrete action nor gave any form of promise.

The Iraqi refugees vowed to continue to protest until the time the UNHCR acts in their favor.

In Medan, North Sumatra Province, several refugees also rallied on the same day.

Ibrahim Basir, a Palestinian refugee, was displeased and annoyed over the fact that despite the refugees having resided in Medan for several years, their cause had been forgotten and that the UNHCR had yet to process matters over moving them to third countries, such as Australia, New Zealand, Canada, and the United States.
"We are bored of living like this. We just eat and sleep and are not allowed to find jobs," he stated.