Monday, April 2, 2018


Jakarta, April 2, 2018 (Antara) - Indonesia is optimistic of attracting at least 74 thousand Vietnamese tourists in 2018, or up from 67 thousand in 2017.
         This sense of optimism grew after the country participated in the Vietnam International Travel Mart (VITM) 2018 held at the Hanoi International Center for Exhibition, Hanoi, Mar 29 until Apr 1.
         Indonesia has sent seven travel bureaus from Bali and Yogyakarta to participate in the VITM, as Bali and Yogyakarta have become the most popular Indonesian tourist destinations for Vietnamese.
         Vietnam's Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam had visited the Indonesian pavilion following the opening of the Travel Mart on Mar 29.
         Accompanied by Indonesian Ambassador to Vietnam Ibnu Hadi, the Vietnamese deputy prime minister held a discussion regarding the booth called "Wonderful Indonesia" that displayed the replica of a traditional Phinisi boat, complete with its screen painted in the national flag colors of red and white.
         Indonesia's pavilion won the Most Impressive Booth award from the VITM 2018 organizing committee.
         The booth was designed on the business-to-customer and business-to-business concepts, so participants could directly sell tourism packages to customers or forge cooperation with other participating industries.
         The Indonesian pavilion also provided tourism information and had a coffee and refreshments corner, batik corner, virtual reality video 360, games, and gift redemption center.
         "Vietnam is one of the countries with a recorded growth of over six percent, while its middle class is increasing," Ambassador Hadi noted.

         In 2017, the number of Vietnamese visitors to Indonesia had reached some 67 thousand and following intensified promotional efforts, Hadi is optimistic that the count would increase to 80 thousand.
         "The target of receiving at least 74 thousand Vietnamese tourists is most likely achievable, as Vietnam has enjoyed high economic growth over the last 10 years," Indonesian Ambassador to Vietnam Ibnu Hadi informed Antara on the sidelines of the VITM 2018 on March 29.
         The number of rich people in Vietnam has increased, and several of them are interested in traveling abroad, he noted.
         However, traveling to Indonesia from Hanoi is problematic due to the absence of direct flights.
         "This issue of lack of accessibility has led to Vietnamese people opting to go for holidays in Thailand, Malaysia, China, Japan, and Hong Kong," he added.
          Heri Hermawan, head of the Fourth Area Marketing covering Indochina of the Indonesian Tourism Ministry, remarked that Indonesia's participation in the VITM 2018 is expected to attract tourists from Vietnam.
         "Flight limitations should be addressed quickly to increase tourist arrivals from both countries," he said.
         So far, there are only Jakarta-Ho Chi Minh City and Ho Chi Minh-Jakarta direct flights served by Vietnam Airlines and Garuda Indonesia once a day.
        In addition to carrying out tourism promotion activities in Vietnam, the tourism ministry has invited representatives of the media and tourism industry in Vietnam to visit several tourist destinations in Indonesia.
          Meanwhile, Indonesia¿s pavilion also displayed Batik art during the VITM 2018, attracting a number of visitors who were keen on learning about the Batik painting technique.
        Dozens of visitors, queuing up at the Batik Corner, stood in front of the pavilion to seek information on batik and gain first-hand experience of the art.
        "Visitors, mostly students, were eager to learn how to make batik," Krismini Kussudiarsono, a batik art instructor at Textile Museum, said.
        Kussudiarsono remarked that visitors were excited to learn about batik art.
        "Every day, we offer batik coaching to only 25 visitors, while the demand was high," Kussudiarsono noted.
        Kussudiarsono said she had provided tools, such as canting, a pen to apply wax in batik; mini stove; wax; white cloths, with various motives, such as flowers and airplane; and "kawung batik."
   The result of their batik works could be taken home as a souvenir from the Indonesian Pavilion," she added.
         In addition to Batik attraction, the country's pavilion was quite crowded with visitors looking for information on Indonesian tourist destinations and those wanting to taste Nusantara coffee.
         Heri Hermawan said the tourism ministry always promotes Indonesia's coffee while participating in travel marts in various countries such in India, Spain, Germany, the UK, the Netherlands, Japan and South Korea.
            "(Indonesia's) coffee stand always becomes an attraction for visitors, in addition to a replica of Pinisi Nusantara boat displayed in front of Indonesia's pavilion," he said.
             Indonesian barista Grammy Marella Averil of Home Coffee Roastery in  Solo served coffee up to 300 visitors per day during the Vietnam Travel Mart.
            The 29-year old Averil offered four kinds of coffee - Aceh Gayo, Toraja, Mandailing and Sidikalang, to coffee lovers in Hanoi.         ***1***

(T.F001/A/BESSR/F. Assegaf) 02-04-2018

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