Saturday, March 10, 2018

INDONESIA HOPES TO GAIN LONG-TERM BENEFITS FROM IMF-WB ANNUAL MEETINGS by Fardah

Jakarta, March 10, 2018 (Antara) - Christine Lagarde, Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), led a delegation to Indonesia recently to check the preparations for the IMF-World Bank (IMF-WB) Annual Meetings to be held in Nusa Dua, Bali, from Oct 8 to 14, 2018.
         Lagarde seemed to be satisfied with the sound preparations made by the Indonesian Government, as the host for the meeting, so far. She was optimistic that the meeting would run smoothly and successfully as expected.  
    The opportunity to host the annual meetings, which is one of the world's largest financial and economic gatherings, brings many benefits to the host country, including increased tourism and investment and business opportunities that last long after the meetings are over.
         Up to 15 thousand people are expected to attend the annual meetings, including about 3.5 thousand delegates from 189 member countries, roughly 1 thousand media representatives, and more than 5 thousand participants representing the private sector, the banking community, academic institutions, civil society organizations, and also observers and parliamentarians.      
    The annual meetings will also feature side events, such as seminars, investment forum, workshop, and cultural events.  
    During her stay in Bali, Lagarde was accompanied by Peter Jacobs, chairman of the IMF-WB Annual Meetings' Task Force, and Causa Iman Karana, head of the Bank Indonesia chapter in Bali.
         "We are very pleased with the extraordinary cooperation that we have established with Bank Indonesia (BI), the related authorities, and the government for this activity. We maintain an amazing relationship," she remarked.

         A review of the preparations for the meeting was also carried out by Indonesian Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan, who is chairman of the national organizing committee of the IMF-WB Annual Meeting, in early March 2018.
         Accompanied by Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati and Governor of BI Agus Martowardojo, Pandjaitan toured Bali, Banyuwangi District in East Java, Mandalika special economic zone in West Nusa Tenggara Province, and Labuan Bajo in East Nusa Tenggara Province.
         Banyuwangi, Laboan Bajo, and Mandalika, which are located relatively close to Bali, have been designated as supporting regions for the IMF-WB Annual Meetings.
         Pandjaitan is optimistic that the international meetings will promote Indonesia's economic potential at the global level.
         "The meeting can offer several benefits to Indonesia, including promoting it at the international level," he told the press in Nusa Dua on March 2, 2018.
         Earlier, Jacobs remarked that the total gain worth around Rp5.7 trillion is the benefit that goes to the people of Bali in the short term.
         The Indonesian government spends more than Rp800 billion in hosting the annual meetings.
         The funds were spent to build infrastructure to support the meetings in Bali, among other things.
         The infrastructure projects include development of apron, or parking place, for aircraft at the Gusti Ngurah Rai International Airport, which will cost around Rp1.34 trillion.
         There are also development of underpass, which is estimated to cost Rp289 billion; construction of a statue of Garuda Wisnu Kencana (GWK); and expansion of the Benoa tourist port, which will cost around Rp1.7 trillion.
         "The economic circulation would help boost Bali's economic growth. That is the short-term benefit. There is still long-term benefit," he revealed.
         The central bank, BI, has also predicted that Bali will have a huge economic gain from the planned annual meetings. 
    The consumption and investment, as well as the business sectors, will grow, Causa Iman Karana, head of the BI chapter in Bali, stated.
         The expenditure for air transport is around Rp36 billion, car rent is around Rp38 billion, foods and beverages and entertainment is around Rp146 billion, and the cost of the meeting by the Committee is around Rp1 trillion.
         He explained that he was optimistic that with the big economic circulation, Bali's economy would grow stronger by 6 percent to 6.4 percent.
         The Indonesian Government, however, is hoping that other provinces beyond Bali would also be able to enjoy benefits from the meetings.
         For that purpose, six tourist destinations will be offered in the tour packages for the IMF-WB Annual Meeting delegates.
         The tourist destinations are Bali - Lombok, Bali-Komodo, Bali-Banyuwangi, Bali-Yogjakarta, Bali-Toraja in South Sulawesi, Bali-Jakarta, and Bali-Danau Toba in North Sumatra.
         The Ministry of Tourism, together with the office of the Coordinating Minister of Maritime Affairs, plan to conduct follow-up events to make sure that the meetings' participants will come back to Indonesia for holidays with their families next time. ***1***
(f001/INE/B003)
EDITED BY INE

(T.F001/A/BESSR/Bustanuddin) 10-03-2018

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