On January 26 2020 , Chinese tourists marched from Nusa Pineda to the speedboat dock on Serangan Island, Bali. Some of them wore masks to Just in case. The coronavirus has begun to affect not only Indonesia’s tourism but also exports, which could cloud the country’s economic outlook.
Hariyadi Sukamdani, head of the Indonesian Employers’ Association (Abendo), said that Indonesian palm oil was one of the affected products as shipments were delayed due to the outbreak of the virus. Chinese producer and one of the main buyers of Indonesian palm oil.
As trade with China, one of Indonesia’s major trading partners, declines, the government will struggle to achieve its 5.3% economic growth target this year.
“If the situation continues, we expect economic growth to reach only 5%,” Hariyadi told reporters, adding that China had lost about 1.7 million foreign tourists from China when it started its business activities. Lost ground due to coronavirus.
“Among us, these commodities are mainly palm oil and mineral raw materials. These exports have been affected. At the same time, our imports from China, most of which are manufactured goods and daily necessities, have slowed.”
He added that the company is looking for other markets to replace China, but this is a challenge as the economic superpowers offer competitive prices.
However, according to a spokesman for Intan Wibisono, the online marketplace of Bukalapak, the epidemic has not affected the shipment of Chinese products to Indonesia in the area of e-commerce.
Intan told that “Currently, business activities and merchandise distribution on the Bukalapak platform are still as usual.” “We still have to see changes in consumer behaviour because we still record up to 200 per day. 10,000 transactions. ”
The Indonesian Bureau of Statistics (BPS) warned on Monday that this year’s coronavirus outbreak may obscure expectations, as a total of 16.1 million foreign tourists visited Indonesia in 2019 and the government’s goal is not to attract 20 million tourists.
“The spread of the Coronavirus in China will undoubtedly reduce the entry of foreigners from China to Indonesia this year,” Suhariyanto said at a news conference on Monday.
According to BPS data, Malaysia brought most tourists to Indonesia, followed by Singapore, China, Australia and East Timor in 2019. In December alone, about 154,200 Chinese citizens visited Indonesia, accounting for 11.2% of 1.38 million foreigners who entered the country.
Suhariyanto added: “We are still working to attract more foreign tourists to Indonesia.”
The government agreed to temporarily suspend the import of live animals from China and consider banning other products, including food and beverages, as a precautionary measure against the spread of Coronavirus to the country.
Trade Minister Agus Suparmanto told reporters on Monday that the measure will be implemented soon and will remain effective until the virus is contained.
Argus said after the ministerial meeting on coronavirus in Jakarta, “It is clear that we will stop importing live animals from China and we are still considering banning other products.” He added that the government “will only stop import Products that may transmit coronavirus”.
He added that the government will seek other countries to meet the demand for products to offset China’s import ban.
China is Indonesia’s largest trading partner. Southeast Asia imports garlic and fruits and other food and beverages from China.
As of Tuesday, all coronaviruses 426 except China had been infected with more than 20,000 worldwide and had been infected with the severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) 2003 due to another coronavirus originating from China that year.
The Indonesian government said on Sunday it would ban all flights to and from China to prevent the spread of this deadly and highly contagious coronavirus.
The ban came into effect at 12 am on Monday and it bans tourists who stay in China for more than 14 days from visiting or transiting to Indonesia. The government has suspended visa and free visa requirements for Chinese citizens.
At the same time, Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi said the government would also calculate the impact of the coronavirus on the country’s economy, including tourism.