Rebuilding Indonesia's Image in Australia and New Zealand
Bali Post Interview with Gede Pitana, Director of International Promotions, Indonesian Department of Culture and Tourism, Outlines Steps to Rebuild Indonesia's Image Following July Bombings in Jakarta.
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The September 3, 2009, edition of The Bali Post carried an interview with I Gede Pitana, the former Head of the Bali Tourism Authority and currently serving as the Director of International Promotions at the Department of Culture and Tourism. That interview focused on efforts now underway to restore the image of Indonesian tourism in Australian and New Zealand following the July bombing of the Ritz-Carlton Hotel and Marriott.
The Interview: I Gede Pitana, Director of International Promotions, Department of Culture and Tourism.
Bali Post: What is the impact of the bombing of the Marriott and Ritz-Carlton?
Pitana: The effect of the recent bombing of the Ritz-Carlton and JW Marriott were not as great as similar events of 2002 and 2005, but the image of Indonesia was damaged in those two countries (Australia and New Zealand). It's a given that the effect of the explosions will impact those countries in which several or a single of its citizens were victims, such as New Zealand. Countries which had victims of the latest bombing, in this instance New Zealand, we must try to approach on a human level.
Bali Post: How about Australia?
Pitana: Australia is another country (we must address), chosen because of its role as a key target of Indonesian tourism and its rapid rate of stabile tourism growth. In Australia we will undertake a number of activities based in Sydney, given that city's role as the main gateway for Australians traveling to Indonesia.
Bali Post: Who will lead these promotional activities?
Pitana: The delegations to these two countries to restore Indonesia's image will be led by the Minister of Culture and Tourism Jero Wacik. The visit of the Minister will hopefully portray the condition of Indonesia following the most recent bombings and the serious intent of the Indonesian government to restore its tourism sector. We want to demonstrate that Indonesia very much honors and values these two countries (Australia and New Zealand).
Bali Post: What's the Australian market look like?
Pitana: Australia is one of the ten major countries that forms the major tourism market for Indonesia. Through July, the number of tourist visitors from that country to Indonesia increased 25% over the previous year's total to 267,227. We are targeting 550,000 tourist visitors from Australia to Indonesia (for 2009).
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