Kamis, 18 Oktober 2018

PROLONGED DROUGHT TRIGGERS WILDFIRES ON MOUNTAINS IN JAVA by Fardah

  Jakarta, Oct 18, 2018 (Antara) - Some parts of Indonesia's regions have entered the rainy season, while several others, such as Java and Nusa Tenggara Islands, are experiencing prolonged severe dry season, causing drought, water shortages, and also wildfires.
         On Java Island, the prolonged dry season has triggered wildfires in forest areas located on the slopes of several mountains in Central, East, and West Java Provinces.
         Among the mountains hit by wildfires were Mount Merbabu, Mount Sumbing, Mount Slamet, and Mount Sindoro in Central Java Province; Mount Argopuro and Mount Sadran in East Java Province; Mount Ciremai in West Java Province; and Mount Lawu located in the border of the provinces of Central and East Java.
         Fortunately, vigilant local authorities, supported by volunteers, have managed to control and finally extinguish the wildfires in a relatively short period of time.
         In Mount Merbabu, two fires gutted two different forest areas located respectively in Boyolali District and Semarang District.
        The wildfire that ravaged part of a forest area on the slope located in Boyolali District was put out on Oct 12, 2018 by a joint team comprising military and police officers as well as volunteers.
         Another fire, however, broke out in an area located in Semarang District and razed a forest area measuring 400 hectares. 
   Some 100 people were deployed to put out the fire, according to Edy Sutiyarto, head of the Mount Merbabu National Park Office.

FLOODS STRIKE SUMATRA AS RAINY SEASON BEGINS by Fardah

Jakarta, Oct 18, 2018 (Antara)- Rainy season has begun in some parts of Indonesia, particularly on Sumatra Island, but the dry season has continued in other regions, such as on Java Island and East Nusa Tenggara.
        Such a weather phenomenon is quite normal in Indonesia, as the country is prone to hydrometeorological disasters, such as flooding in rainy season and wildfires or severe drought during the dry season.
          In East Nusa Tenggara (NTT), for instance, 11 districts have been hit by the severe dry season. The districts, which include East Manggarai, Nagekeo, Ende, Lembata, East Sumba, Rote Ndao, Kupang, North Timor Tengah, Malaka, and Belu, have received no rains for more than two months.
   In Central, East and West Java Provinces, wildfires, triggered by severe dry weather, hit forest areas on at least nine mountains, but local authorities managed to extinguish the blazes.
         Among the affected mountains were Mount Merbabu, Mount Sumbing, Mount Slamet, and Mount Sindoro in Central Java Province; Mount Argopuro and Mount Sadran in East Java Province; Mount Ciremai in West Java Province; and Mount Lawu located on the border of the provinces of Central and East Java.
         On Sumatra Islands, however, floods triggered by incessant downpours have inundated several provinces, including Aceh, North Sumatra, West Sumatra and Riau.
         In Langkat, North Sumatra, floods submerged rice fields measuring 118 hectares in Stabat and Binjai Sub-districts, while Sei Blengking river spilled over its bank, said Miswandi, a local agriculture officer.
         Additionally, seven hectares of corn fields, located in Banyumas and Kwala Bingei villages in Stabat, were also flooded.
        The local agriculture office has deployed several officers to monitor the conditions of flood-affected farming areas in Langkat, and to help local farmers.

Sabtu, 13 Oktober 2018

INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION CRUCIAL TO DEAL WITH CYBERATTACKS by Fardah

  Jakarta, Oct 13, 2018 (Antara) - Effective cybersecurity reduces the risks of cyberattacks and protects companies, organizations, and individuals from the deliberate exploitation of systems, networks, and technologies.
        As cyberattacks tend to increase worldwide, vulnerability of information technology must be given special attention, as its risks could affect million of internet users, individuals, and businesses as well as harm the national economy.
         To discuss cybersecurity issues, the National Cyber and Encryption Agency (BSSN) of Indonesia organized the fourth CodeBali cyber security conference in Bali on October 9-12, 2018.
        This year, CodeBali, held for the first time in 2015, was themed "Cyber Security Solutions for The Emerging Threat: Protection in Critical Information Infrastructure and IoT Word."
   IT experts, government and private institution officials, researchers, and students majoring in IT participated in the international conference.
       Technological progress of Internet of Things (IoT) could deliver various positive outcomes, particularly in supporting the development of national critical infrastructure information (IIKN) and the national economic growth, according to BSSN Chairman Djoko Setiadi.
       Through CodeBali 2018, the agency has urged stronger cooperation, synergy, and collaboration in cybersecurity.
       The event was aimed at unifying capabilities of experts and youngsters from several Asian countries to deal with massive cyberattacks.
         "This event is significant, as cybercrimes not only take place in Indonesia but also in other parts of the world," he noted in his opening remarks.

Jumat, 05 Oktober 2018

INDONESIA PLEASED TO WITNESS RISE IN CHINESE TOURIST SPENDING by Fardah

Jakarta, Oct 5, 2018 (Antara) - China has overtaken Australia in contributing the largest number of foreign tourists to Indonesia, and Chinese tourist spending too has increased.
           Every Chinese tourist, on an average, spends about US$1,000 in Indonesia per visit, with the length of stay averaging five days.
           Chinese tourists have become an increasingly lucrative segment for Indonesia. Earlier, their spending averaged only US$700-$800 each per visit, but now, they have become bigger spenders.
           Some 200 thousand Chinese visit Indonesia per month, Vincent Jemadu, director of Great China Promotion of the Tourism Ministry, stated on September 25, 2018.
          The best seller among Indonesian tour packages in China is that for five days, inclusive of flights.
           The Tourism Ministry has set this year's target for Chinese tourist arrivals at 2.6 million.
           The Tourism Ministry is optimistic of the target of 2.6 million visits being achieved this year.
         Some 1.5 million visits by Chinese tourists to Indonesia have already been recorded in the first eight months of the year. 
      During the 2016-2017 period, Chinese tourists were recorded as the largest group of foreign travelers visiting Indonesia, outnumbering Australian visitors and those from Singapore and Malaysia.
           However, the target to draw more Chinese tourists to Indonesia faces a roadblock, with only limited number of Mandarin speaking guides in the country.
           Some 40 percent of the Chinese tourists arriving in the country flew in directly to Bali, 30 percent entered the country via Jakarta, and 20 percent via the Riau Islands.
           However, lately, a sharp increase has been recorded in the number of Chinese tourists entering the country via Manado, North Sulawesi.

Selasa, 02 Oktober 2018

WORLD LEADERS EXTEND SYMPATHIES OVER DEADLY SULAWESI EARTHQUAKE by Fardah

Jakarta, Oct 2, 2018 (Antara) - Indonesia is not alone in grieving over the devastation caused by a deadly earthquake and subsequent tsunami that hit several districts in Central Sulawesi Province on September 28, 2018.
         Several world leaders have expressed sympathies and condolences over at least 1,234 deaths, 799 injured, 99 missing, and nearly 60 thousand displaced people in Central Sulawesi. Some of the leaders have also offered assistance.
        Among the world leaders are US President Donald Trump, Russian President Vladimir Putin, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, Saudi Arabian King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, South Korean President Moon Jae-in, United Arab Emirates President Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres, IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde, World Bank President Jim Yong Kim, and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
        "It sends across a strong message that we are not alone in these difficult times," President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) wrote on his Facebook account, according to information on the Cabinet Secretary's official website on October 2, 2018.
        Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal, and Security Affairs Wiranto revealed that 18 countries -- the United States, France, Czech, Switzerland, Norway, Hungary, Turkey, the European Union (EU), Australia, South Korea, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, New Zealand, Singapore, Thailand, Japan, India, and China -- have pledged help.