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Bali News by Bali Update
BALI UPDATE #955 - 22 December 2014

IN THIS UPDATE


For Instant Gas Relief
Pertamina Says it will Go Ahead with ĎPerfectly Safeí LNG Depot at Baliís Port of Benoa

State-owned PT Pertamina Gas (Pertagas) have confirmed that plans are moving ahead to build a Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) Depot at Bali’s southernmost Port of Benoa to supply, among others, the fuel requirements for electrification for PT Indonesia Power.

As reported by the State News Agency Antara, Cening Widhiana, the officer in charge of LNG construction for Eastern Indonesia, told a meeting in Bali that Pertamina had already entered into discussions to the managers of the port – PT Pelindo III – Cabang Benoa.

“We have already approached and held serious discussions with Pelindo III about plans to build a LNG terminal in the Port of Benoa, Bali,” said Cening at a Focus Group Discussion titled “LNG Terminal for Denpasar: Goals and Challenges.”
 
The Pertamina official said the construction of the LNG facility at Benoa only needs to address some remaining technical issues remaining between PT Pelindo and the Municipal Government of Denpasar.
 
He said the main remaining obstacle is a debate between PT Pelindo and the Denpasar Government on issues related to zoning and planning rules.
 
“The are no insurmountable obstacle. Nonetheless, we need to strive for a common, shared perception on matters of mutual interest in order that construction of the LNG Depot can commence as soon as possible,” added Cening.
 
Cening told the press that construction of the LNG Depot would start in 2015 and proceed in stages.
 
The Pertamina official said that around 5 hectares is needed for the construction of the LNG Depot. In fact, only some 2 hectares are needed for tank storage and gas transfer areas with the remaining 3 hectares to be reserved for green garden spaces.
 
“We understand that Bali is a tourism area. It needs large areas for green, open spaces to maintain its natural balance. The placement of the LNG Depot at Benoa is very strategic. It is not only close to PT Indonesia Power that is 2.6 kilometers away from the Port and can be connected piping. The LNG can be used to refrigerate the tuna that are a major export item from Indonesia to countries abroad,” Cening explained.
 
“The temperature of LNG is minus 160 degree Celsius and is therefore very difficult to catch fire. Moreover, it can be used as a refrigerant for tuna,” he added.
 
Many parties in Bali have expressed concerns about the safety of locating a large LNG Depot at Benoa – in close proximity to populated areas and Bali sole airport.
 
“We confirm and we guarantee that LNG does not easily burn because it is very cold,” said Cening.
 
Until matters can be resolved between the Port and Municipality, shipments of LNG for the Denpasar power generating plant will continue to come from Bontang carried on the MV Surya Satsuna LNG Tank Ship.
 
The resupply of LNG will continue to take place at the Port of Benoa. Initially, shipments of 220 thousand metric tons will be used to provide an additional 80 megawatts of power via the PT Indonesian Power Plant at Pesanggaran, Bali.
 
The chairman of the Bali Foundation for Sustainable Development, Dr. Ketut Gede Dharma Putra, praised LNG facility for being more environmentally than other fuel sources.
 
“LNG is very friendly to the environment compared to other fuels, such as coal. All countries are shifting to using LNG because the use of LNG reduces costs," he added.

Related Article 

Editorial: No More Dog and Pony Shows, Please!

Passing Gas

Development at What Cost?

A Ghastly Idea


No More Dog and Pony Shows, Please!
Editorial: The Lack of a Public Hearing Process in Bali is Leading Bali into Murky Dangerous Waters on Non-Transparency

Two major developments are being railroaded into being in Bali without the kind of careful and complete airing of all the issues involved that could help prevent the local leaders from making decisions with potentially grave consequences for the safety of the Balinese people and the future viability of Bali as a leading worldwide tourism destination.
 
Perhaps a lingering remnant of Indonesia’s recent feudal past, major decisions are still take in Bali without giving all elements of Balinese society the opportunity the chance to voice their legitimate concerns and questions about major projects that will fundamentally change the future face of Bali.
 
In a masterful slight of hand and magical misdirection involving visits by soccer super-star Cristiano Ronaldo, his installations by a local businessman as the “mangrove ambassador” and the ostentatious PR event involving the planting of trees by Ronaldo and Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono – a somewhat devious design was laid to soften the announcement that quickly followed revealing massive reclamation of Benoa harbor that would eliminate some 700 hectares of mangrove bottom lands in South Bali.
 
Sim Sala Bin and Abracadabra – if you missed it, those behind the Ronaldo dog and pony show are the same people heading PT Tirta Wahana Bali International – the company “officially” appointed to reclaim and develop Benoa Bay.
 
We contend that a more transparent and inclusive approach to the Bali reclamation project would have include a preliminary environmental impact study done at the provinces behest followed by an open solicitation of expressions of interests to develop the project from all qualified parties.
 
What Bali got instead was a deal cut behind closed doors that gives scant consideration to pressing local issues such as public use spaces, essential services support and the provision of affordable housing for the Balinese.
 
In fast succession after the still-simmering reclamation project, State-owned Pertamina have announced a deal is nearly done that will build a massive LNG Petroleum Depot at the Port of Benoa to supply fuel for the nearby electrical generating station of PT Indonesian Power.
 
The large, technically complex storage domes that will be installed on a 5-hectare plot at the Port of Benoa will be located immediate adjacent to the protected mangrove conservation area, under the approach and take off path of Bali’s Ngurah Rai Airport and in close proximity to densely populated residential and tourism areas.
 
Pertamina assures no expense will be spared in making sure the LNG Depot poses no threat to the safety of Bali and its people. While this is good news, such large-scale development should go through a public hearing process that would allow a free and open discourse, covering at least the following:
  • Concerns expressed by the former Minister of Tourism and leading academics questioning the safety and environmental impact of a LNG Depot in the Port of Benoa when other, possible more preferable, alternatives exist.
  • A careful examination of contingency plans in the event of a leak of super-cooled LNG. LNG, stored at minus 160 degrees Celsius, when is escapes in an uncontrolled manner turns a gaseous form and combusting as it mixes with air and water. The potential resulting explosion and from the storage tanks or LNG resupply tankers could result in radiation intensities of 1.6 kw per square meter in a wide radius that would involve Bali’s airport and much of Nusa Dua, Kuta and Denpasar.
  • The danger of spills from the storage tanks and during the delicate transfer process. The frequency of diesel oil spills at the Port of Benoa do not inspire great confidence when it come to the careful handling of toxic and potentially explosive materials.
  • Concomitant risks posed to the proposed LNG storage facility in close proximity to a major cargo, passenger and fishing port. As recently as August 2014 a fire at the port raged for 22-hours that destroyed at least 6 fishing boats.
  • In the early days of LNG usage a 1944 disaster in Cleveland, Ohio (USA) claimed 128 lives. Pertamina's claims that stored LNG Gas is "too cold" to burn does not stad up to event the most casual Google search on the subject. and ignores the obvious fact that the danger begins when gas manages, for whatever reason, to escape it storage confines.
  • The unique threat posed by “pool fires” at an LNG storage facility. If LNG escapes near an ignition source a fire will start above the gas source. Such fires are intense, and burn at temperatures far in excess of oil or gas fires. It is impossible to extinguish such fires that must, by their very nature, be allowed to burn themselves out. Experts claim that a “pool fire,” especially on water due to thermal effects, poses the most serious LNG threat. The proposed Port of Benoa facility will sit on an isthmus surrounded by water.
  • The additional danger posed by flammable vapor clouds that can result from an LNG spill. A cloud of LNG gas could travel over a distance until it met an ignition source and then explode. Experts warn that a vapor cloud explosion would eventually burn itself back to the original spill site resulting in a cataclysmic explosion.
  • Experts say that LNG depots could also be the scene of flameless explosions caused when LNG mixes with a body of water. Also terms a “rapid phase transition” event, experts say the area devastated could equal those of the LNG incendiary explosion scenario.
  • While an LNG cloud is not in and of itself toxic, it does have the potential of suffocating through asphyxiation the surrounding populations through the displacement of breathable air in the atmosphere. A floating LNG cloud is extremely cold and could injure and kill on its way to igniting a devastating fire when it meets an ignition point.
  • Because of the highly visible and easily identified nature of LNG facilities and the inherent threat of an explosion the U.S. Government has identified a genuine threat posed by terrorism and is in the process of reviewing and revising all security arrangements at LNG facilities.
  • Located within 1-2 kilometers of Bali’s Ngurah Rai Airport and directly under the take-off and departure path, questions on an island that is no stranger to terrorism must be raised about the potential threat of a 911-style attack.
  • More recent worldwide events must also raise the specter of cyber-attacks on the computer-based systems that ensure the delicate balance of temperatures and pressure that must be maintained at any LNP Depot.
While Bali’s desire to have cleaner, more affordable sources of energy are commendable, the Island is clearly entitled to a more thorough examination of any threats posed by an LNG Depot at the Port of Benoa than the glib assurances of a Pertamina official charged with building such facilities.

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Passing Gas
 
Development at what Cost?
 
A Ghastly Idea
 
Ignoring the Protests
 
A Bum’s Rush
 
Fill in the Blanks
 
And the Emperor Wore No Clothes
 
Lame Duck Legislation
 
Connecting the Dots in Bali
 
Fancy Footwork by Ronaldo
 
Cristiano Ronaldo – Bali’s ambassador to the World

Major Port Fire in Bali


Putting on the Ritz, Again
Ritz-Carlton Makes a Beachhead on Baliís Southern Coast

lies, Ritz Kids is housed in a dedicated building created with young sophisticates in mind with play and study spaces as well as a private pool. The lounge of The Ritz-Carlton Club, includes a private pool and sun deck. The Ritz-Carlton Spa offers a distinctive wellness experience that is Balinese in nature. Surrounded by lush foliage, the Spa will boast 14 treatment rooms seamlessly incorporating indoor and outdoor spaces.
 
Two stunning Balinese wedding chapels will serve Bali’s large wedding market, while meeting facilities for up to 200 guests will serve corporate and private events.

Book a Stay at the Ritz-Carlton Bali


Bali Security Cranked Up
Bali Governor Puts Island on Heightened State of Alert Following Sydney Hostage Drama and Discovery of Indonesian ISIS Sympathizers in Malaysia

Beritadewata.com reports that Bali Governor Made Mangku Pastika told the press on Tuesday, December 16, 2014 that the military and police in Bali had increased their level of readiness in the wake of the Sydney, Australia hostage crisis and the arrest of 12 Indonesians in Malaysia with connections to ISIS.
 
Explaining the heightened level of alert, Pastika said: “It is not impossible that similar acts can happen elsewhere, including Bali. I have already coordinated with the Police and the Armed Forces to increase their preparedness and security in Bali.”

The Governor explained that the heightened state of vigilance coincides with the traditional enhancement of security measures put in place in Bali over every Christmas and New Year holiday period.

Instructions to step up security measures have also been conveyed by the Governor to hotels, restaurants and entertainment centers in Bali.

Governor Pastika also called on the security guards working at starred hotels (Satpam) to tighten security measures at their respective hotels, saying: “Be observant of every movement of persons or personal effects. When something makes you suspicious, reported it to the responsible authorities.”

Pastika said he has received no reports of cancelled visits to Bali from Australia in connection with the Sydney hostage incident.

The Australian hostage taking was, according to Pastika, a terrorist act, That, and the discovery of Indonesian sympathizers with ISIS in Malaysia, demand that Bali upgrade its level of preparedness against possible terrorist acts closer to home.


I Spy a New Matahari
Matahari Adds 3rd Store in Bali at Lippo Mall Kuta

Matahari Department Store has opened is 129th outlet at the Lippo Mall Kuta Bali.
 
The Store is the 3rd Matahari Outlet in Bali, supplementing existing branches in Kuta and downtown Denpasar
 
The new Matahari store covers 3,000 square-meters of space.
 
According to The Jakarta Globe, the new store location was financed entirely from internal cash resources.


A Million Rupiahs Isnít What it used to Be
Government Pledges to Halt the Rapid Decline in the Indonesian Rupiah

The Jakarta Globe reports that the Indonesian government is pledging to do what is necessary to halt the declining value of the Indonesian Rupiah that has now slumped to levels below those experienced during the 1998 monetary crisis.
 
On Tuesday, December 16, 2014, the Indonesian Rupiah was trading at 12,900 to the U.S. Dollar.
 
Preferring to take an optimistic view, Indonesian Vice-president Jusuf Kalla told the press that while the weakening Rupiah may cause price increases, the dip in value will also bring some benefits to the national economy.
 
Kalla explained that a lower value of the Rupiah would bring a windfall to export commodities. At the same time, the government is taking steps to stabilize the cost of essential commodities such as rice, sugar and meat.
 
Some experts in banking circles link the rapid decline in the Rupiah to a generalize panic triggered by a 9.3% decline in the Russian Ruble that left investors wary of emerging economies generally and countries with current-account deficits such as Brazil, India, India, South Africa and Turkey
 
Government expert foresee the Rupiah strengthening at year’s end with measures in place to purchase Rupiah-denominated bonds on the secondary market.

The declining Rupiah will put added pressure on Garuda Indonesia where domestic ticket sales denominated in Rupiah will contribute less to pay the cost of fuel and a host of other dollar-denominated expenses of the Airline.


Imagine That
Hard Rock Imagine a Better World and Raises Smile and Funds for Indonesian Children

On the eve of the 24th anniversary of the death of John Lennon who died in December 1980, Hard Rock Hotel Bali re-launched its “IMAGINE – There’s No Hunger” movement on Friday, November 28, 2014 with a hotel-wide Blood Donation program conducted in the morning, followed by an Orphanage Visit before a Charity Rock Concert in the evening.
“IMAGINE – There’s No Hunger” movement started withbBlood donations in the morning in conjunction with the Indonesian Red Cross at the Sanglah General Hospital in Denpasar. The donated blood was designated for use in transfusions or processed into life-saving medications. More than 40 participants from Hard Rock Hotel Bali joined the program. 
 
In the afternoon, the Hotel invited 25 children and their caretakers from Denpasar’s Eben Haezer Orphanage to take part in a half-day event, where Hard Rock Hotel Bali and Hard Rock Café Bali hosted lunch for the children and a pool visit. The children, some with physical disabilities or personality issues, all enjoyed the half-day of activities organized for them in Kuta.
 
The main event of the day, however, was the “Imagine – Charity Concert” held at Centerstage. A leading Indonesian rock band from Bandung, West Java - The SIGIT, entertained fans. Some 300 music fans turned for the weekend concert. The event was organized in partnership with Macbeth Footwear, Indonesia Solemen - a non-profit humanity organization with sponsorship by Jim Beam, Sailor Jerry and Plaga Wines.
 
World-wide the Imagine Campaign by Hard Rock Hotels touches the lives of children and families in 20 countries and has raised more than $6.4 million to help fight childhood hunger.


Symphony of Feeling
Solo Exhibition of Paintings by Mochammad Toha Hasan, January 19 - March 12,2015 at Ganesha Gallery at Four Seasons Resort Bali at Jimbaran Bay

The Ganesha Gallery at the Four Seasons Resort Bali at Jimbaran will host a solo exhibition by Mochammad Toha Hasan daily from January 19 – March 12, 2015.
 
According to Syafrudin S. Pd of the Jakarta Arts Institute, Toha focuses on the vibrancy of everyday life, from chatting with his wife and children, to being with the surrounding environment. These real life experiences create powerful and endless inspiration for what Toha calls his “Life Art” that is rich in imagery and emotionality.

Toha is focused both on his spiritual calling to his profession as an "artist" while, at the same time, being fully present with his family life and his local community. This environment he aims to express and communicate through on his work laid down on a simple piece of canvas. He strives to share the story of how the bonds of affection between, for example, a father alone with his child, or with his wife, play out against the context of daily activities while, at the same time revealing intimacy, warmth, as well as responsibility.

His works have their own unique characteristics that distinguish Hasan from all other artists. His portrayal of the human form through unusual proportions create a different perspective by using powerful lines and composition against a backdrop of soft shades and textures ensuring that the subject remains the center of focus.

The question that is most often asked Toha is: “why are you focusing so much on the study of portraying children in your art?”

In response, Toha explains, “through my experiences teaching painting to children who live around my house in Sukawati Bali, I feel such an inspirational and emotional closeness to these children – to this community and their creativity.”

Continuing, Toha adds: “Perhaps it is this intimacy that is the essence of what gave birth to some of these art works featured in my current exhibition - the Symphony of Feeling"

Symphony of Feelings
Painting by Mochammad Toha Hasan
Ganesha Gallery at the Four Seasons Resort Bali
at Jimbaran Bay
Open daily from January 19 – March 12, 2015


Bali Non-Stop to Cairn, Australia
JetStar to Fly Direct Three Time a Week Cairns to Bali Flights Starting in March 2015

JetStar will launch a direct service between Cairns and Bali and also fly between Melbourne and Wellington, New Zealand starting on March 29, 2105.
 
The new service is expected to help boost growing traffic numbers between Bali and New Zealand.

The Cairns to Bali service will be the only direct service offered by a low-cost carrier between the two points.

David Hall, CEO of JetStar for Australia and New Zealand, said: “We’re always looking to open up new travel opportunities for our customers and I’m delighted that we’re the first carrier to offer direct flights from Cairns to Bali.”

“Bali is one of Australia’s favorite overseas holiday destinations and I’m sure our direct low fares flights will appeal to families and groups of friends looking for a relaxing beach getaway,” Hall added.

The Cairns to Bali route will be flown with Airbus A320 Aircraft with three flights beginning on March 31, 2015. The new Melbourne-Wellington service will operate four days a week from March 30, 2015.

The Bali to Cairns service on JetStar will depart Bali at 2250 arriving in Cairns at 0130. The return flight leaves Cairns at 0220.


Different Strokes Apply in Bali
Pendawa Beach Visitors in Bali Reminded that Sexual Activity and Swimming While Menstruating are Strictly Not Allowed

Travel.detik.com reports that Pandawa Beach on the southernmost part of Bali continues to be something of a trailblazer in devising ways to ensure visitors do not offend local custom and religious practice.

Located in the village of Kutuh, about 45 minutes from Bali’s airport traveling via Jimbaran, Pandawa beach is becoming increasingly popular with Bali visitors.

The local community surrounding the beach is earning praise from tourism officials in Bali for strictly enforcing rules to ensure local sensibilities are not disturbed.

Local officials, partly in deference to the many religious temples in the area, warn beach users to refrain from any kind of sexual activity that would render the area spiritually unclean.
 
Seeking to further protect the sanctity of the area, officials have also now posted signs reminding women experiencing menstruation not to swim in waters surrounding the village.

Provincial tourism officials are pointing to Pandawa Beach as an example of how local communities should manage their tourism areas.

Prohibitions against sexual acts on beaches or menstruating women swimming in the ocean apply in virtually every area of Bali. However, only the villagers at Pandawa Beach have taken firm action to ensure these guidelines are respected by tourism visitors.


Shanghaied No More
Singaraja, Bali Immigration Office Deports 282 Foreign Workers in 2014

Beritabali.com reports that the immigration office of Singaraja in Bali’s far north has deported 282 foreigners during 2014.

The head of the Singaraja immigration office, Aditya, confirmed most of those deported were from the regency of Buleleng where there are a number of industries employing foreign workers.

Most of those deported were of Chinese nationality, with the majority discovered to be found working illegally at the Celukan Bawang Power Plant Project.

The Beritabali.com report did not, however,  reveal if any legal sanctions were imposed on the Indonesian owners of the project who provided illegal employment to the Chinese workers.

During 2014 a total of 675 foreign workers were recorded by the Singaraja Immigration office as holding legal permits to work in North Bali.


That Takes the Lot!
Baliís Tanah Lot Temple Experiencing a Record Number of Visitors Leader Up to Year End Piodalan Ceremony

On Thursday, December 18, 2014, the third day of Galungan festivities (Umanis Galungan) in Bali a number of tourism objects in Bali were flooded with visitors, both domestic and international.

One area inundated with visitors was the iconic Tanah Lot Complex on Bali’s West Coat at Tabanan.

Beritabali.com reports that thousands of Island visitors dropped in on Tanah Lot on to view the most photographed temple in Bali that sits surrounded by waves just a short distance from the shore.

The manager of the Tanah Lot complex, I Ketut Toya Adnyana, confirmed the onslaught of visitors during the Galungan period. On Wednesday, December 17, 2014 a total of 13,634 visitors came to Tanah Lot, a 22.5% increase over the corresponding date during the last Galungan cycle when 11,131 people visited.

Domestic visitors, including Balinese, who came to see the centuries-old temple complex, dominated visitors to Tanah Lot.

Another surge in visitors to Tanah Lot is expected on December 27, 2014 when the peak of a Piodalan Ceremony (anniversary of the temple) will take place. The Piodalan ceremony at Pura Luhur Tanah Lot will run from December 31, 2014 until January 4, 2015.

Hindu devotes in the thousands are expected to visit Tanah Lot during the subject period to make offerings and prayers, followed in close pursuit by thousands of tourist eager to witness the grand religious spectacle.


4.25 Million Foreign Tourists to Bali in 2015?
Bali Seeks to Add 500,000 Tourist Visitors in 2015

The State News Agency Antara reports that the Provincial Government of Bali is expecting an additional 500,000 international visitors to Bali in 2015.
 
The head of the Provincial Bali Tourism office, Anak Agung Gede Yuniarta Putra, said on Thursday, December 18, 2014, that the additional half-million foreign visitors would bring the total number of visitors to 4 million.
 
This total, however, is based on the misassumption that Bali would end 2014 with 3,5 million tourists. Balidiscovery.com projects the final figure on foreign visitors to Bali for 2014 will be closer to 3,75 million.
 
Depending on which figure you use, Bali is therefore projecting between 4 to 4.25 million foreign visitors in 2015.

Putra said the province would focus on information technology to achieve its targets for 2015.
 
The province has only allocated Rp. 5 billion (US$400,000) for tourism promotion in 2015.


When a Bay Becomes a Quagmire
Editorial: We Support Jakarta Globe Call for President Joko Widodo to Cancel the Benoa Bay Reclamation

The Jakarta Globe recently published an editorial titled “Benoa Bay Doesn’t Have to Be Jokowi’s Legacy.”
 
Well-written and insightful, the editorial urged the President to annul the permits for the controversial reclamation project in Benoa Bay, labeling it a controversial remnant left by former President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono that Indonesia’s new Chief Executive Does not need to embrace as his own.

Urging Joko Widodo to give full vent to his demonstrated image as a “protector of the environment” and populist leader, the editorial cited a recent lambasting given by the President to the devil-may-care attitude of large plantation companies that who set forest fires that pollute the entire region in order to widen the coverage of their plantation projects.

The Jakarta Globe editorial urged Joko Widodo to affirm the widespread opposition to the Benoa Bay reclamation project railroaded through in the waning days of the SBY presidency at the behest of the powerful business group behind the project who brazenly presents themselves as a protector of the mangrove forest that will be largely destroyed if their project goes ahead.

Suggesting that political payback should be ignored in the face of the public outcry against the project, the editorial called for the project to be stopped, or at the very least, halted and be put under critical review.

The editorial also underlined how those opposed to the reclamation are genuine members of the Balinese community and not the “rent-a-crowd” masses increasingly mobilized by the rich and powerful in Indonesia seeking to legitimize their positions behind public rallies.

We endorse the Jakarta Globe editorial and urge the President to bring this  dark chapter that is fomenting division in Balinese society quickly to an end by appointing a blue ribbon, independent committee to review the environmental, social and cultural impact of the Benoa Bay reclamation project.

Such a committee should also be tasked to review the protocols and procedures used in appointing the company selected to head the Benoa Bay reclamation. Such a massively important decisions should not have been made behind closed doors and, instead, should have been put up to a competitive bid system to ensure the public derives the greatest possible benefit from surrendering their lands to the private sector.

Clearly, the people of Bali await President Joko Widodo to once again prove his true stripes as a populist President.

Related Article


Editorial: No More Dog and Pony Shows, Please!



When Sleighs Wonít Do
Bali Airport to Operate 134 Extra Flights Over Christmas and New Year Period

As Bali enters into the Christmas and New Years Period for 2014-2015, the Ngurah Rai International Airport is adding more than 130 “extra flights” to handle expected holiday rush of passengers traveling to and from Bali.

Metrobali.com reports that Bali’s airport has prepared an additional capacity of 20,000 seats on domestic flights and 3,400 more seats on international flights.
 
Indonesia’s Minister of Transportation Ignasius Johan confirmed the additional capacity during a visit to Bali’s airport on Thursday, December 18, 2014. “Preparations as we approach Christmas and New Years in terms of facilities at Bali’s Ngurah Rai Airport are ‘OK’ – everything is complete,” assured Johan.
 
The manager of the Bali Airport, Herry A.Y. Sikado, said that requests for additional flight frequencies represent an increase of 7% when compared to 2013.
 
116 extra domestic flight frequencies have been approved to Jakarta, Yogyakarta and Surabaya, while 18 additional international flights to Bangkok, Japan, Taiwan and Australia have been authorized.

The additional flight frequencies will operated between December 22 and January 4, 2014,
 
The airlines that have submitted requests for more flights are Nam Air, Indonesia Air Asia, Sriwijaya Air, Citilink,  Garuda, Asia Atlantic, China Airlines and Jetstar Australia.


Be Prepared
Bali Identifies Areas at Risk of Natural Disaster and Maps Plans to Minimize Destruction

The chief of the Emergency Preparedness Agency for the Province of Bali (BPBD), Dewa Made Indera, told beritadewata.com that there are 16 districts (kecamatan) spread across 6 regencies in Bali that are prone to landslides and flooding.
 
The areas vulnerable to landslides and flooding are:
  • Karangasem Regency:  The districts of Kubu, Sidemen and Bebandem.
  • Bangli Regency: The districts of Kintamani and Tembuku.
  • Gianyar Regency: The districts of Tegalalang, Tampaksiring and Payangan.
  • Buleleng Regency: The districts of Tejakula, Kubutambahan, Sukasada, Sawan, Banjar and Busungbiu.
  • Tabanan Regency: The district of Baturiti.
  • Regency of Badung: The district of Petang.

Indera said there are only 2 regencies in Bali – Klungkung and Jembrana - that can be considered safe from the threat of landslides and flooding.

Meanwhile there are numerous points in Bali’s capital city of Denpasar and the southern parts of the Badung regency that are exposed to the threat of flooding. Flooding in these areas is largely blamed on poor drainage systems or existing systems for drainage that have become clogged with refuse. Uncontrolled building in Bali’s south is also adding to the problems of flooding in many areas.

The emergency preparedness planner for the Province said that Bali is well prepared for natural disaster. “We hope disasters will not occur. But if they do occur, we are ready to handle them and minimize the threat to human life,” said Indera.

BPBD officials on the provincial, regency, district and village level are busily educating the public in Bali to be aware and prepared to confront possible threats in their neighborhoods. Saying that Bali must study from recent landslide tragedies in Java, Indera said: “When heavy rainfall comes, we have instructed the people in threatened areas to immediately evacuate to safe areas and to the home of distant family members not in the danger zone. We have also urged them to bring their valuables with them when they evacuate."

Telephone, Facebook, Twitter, the radio and other means are doing education of the public.

Should evacuation become necessary, BPBD has also developed coordinated programs of assistance with Social Services, Public Works and the Health Department.

“Everyone is on 24-hour standby. Social Services have lain in supplies of rice, instant noodles, blankets, mineral water and other items. The Department of Health has teams and medical supplies at the ready. The Public Works Department has heavy-duty equipment pre-position in key areas. Bali is ready to face any natural disaster,” said Indera.


Mantra for Difficult Times
Australian Mantra Hotel Group Scales Down its Plans in Tough Bali Marketplace

The Australian reports that the Australian Hotel Group Mantra has found the hotel development business in Bali tough going and is curtailing its ambitious plans for wide-scale expansion on the island.

In an article by Property & Tourism Reporter Lisa Allen, Bob East who is the CEO of the Mantra Group said: “We went into Bali thinking it would be hard and it has been hard. It is hard to operate up there.”

As a result, plans to operate two new hotels in Nusa Dua and Legian in Bali have now been abandoned by Mantra who operates 115 properties worldwide.

Apparently Mantra has found Bali dominated and over-supplied by large mid-range hotels. “If you don’t go for the top end of the range, you get caught. The mid-range hotels are not as lucrative, for us the learning has been to wait and get the right quality property and be really selective,” commented East.

The decision by East leaves Mantra with the management of the 49-villa Peppers Sentosa Seminyak.

An initial venture into Nusa Dua got ditched by Mantra when the new hotel failed to meet standards and needed US$5 million to bring the property up to branding snuff – an amount it is assumed the owners were not prepared to front.

Plans to franchise its brand at another hotel in Legian – now operated as the Sing Ken Ken Boutique Hotel have not gone ahead.

In the future, Mantra has said it will not offer franchise agreements in Bali and will only consider management agreements.

Still under development in Bali is the four-star Mantra Hideaway Villas in Pecatu set to open in 2015 and another projects at the Mantra Springhill in Jimbaran set for completion in 2016.

Related Article
 
Major Bali Condotel Deal Signed for Jimbaran


Fire in East Denpasar
Fire Destroys 7 Shop Houses in East Denpasar, Bali

A fire on Jalan Letda Kajeng No. 2 in Denpasar on Thursday, December 18, 2014, has destroyed 7 shop-houses (Ruko) located in Yang Batu, East Denpasar.
 
The fire, believed to have started from a short circuit, started at around 6:30 pm and quickly spread to the adjoining shops. Destroyed were a small restaurant, a bakso shop, a used motorcycle shop, a hand phone dealer, a basic food commodities store, a fruit seller and a daging cilok shop.
 
The fire reportedly started in the small restaurant. Occupied at the time of the fire, the occupants did not notice the fire until a large blaze had already engages the ceiling area of the business. The restaurant owners were only able to salvage a motorcycles and a TV set as they ran from the fire.
 
Firefighters arrived at the scene 50 minutes after the fire’s start when the flames had already engulfed all 7 shops. In all, 8 fire trucks and more than 100 fire-fighting personnel attended the scene of the fire, bringing the fire under control 35 minutes after their arrival.
 
The fire destroyed all 7 businesses, with losses estimated in the billions of rupiah.
 
Police continue to investigate the cause of the fire. No injuries were reported in connection with the blaze.


Fun & Sun Costs More in South Bali
Price of Waters Sports at Tanjung Benoa, Bali Increase by 30%

Water sports operators at Tanjung Benoa in South Bali have increased the tariff for their services by 30%.

The chairman of Association of Water Sports Operators for the regency of Badung (Gahawsri-Badung), Made Tromat, said that operators in the Tanjung Benoa area would be kept under supervision and sanctions imposed against any providers who increase their prices by more than 30%.

According to Radar Bali, the increase in price takes effect from Friday, December 19, 2014.

The agreement to increase prices by 30% has been approved by all members and the Badung government.

Tromat told the press that marine sports operators were seeing a decline in domestic travelers, caused he believed by the low cost air tickets and holiday packages available to neighboring destinations, such as SIngapore.


Baliís Loses Much-Loved Tourism Pioneer
Ida Pedanda Gde Ngurah Karang Ė Founder of Segara Village Hotel Dies at 87

Bali has lost one of its most illustrious tourism figures with the death of Ida Bagus Kompiang on Friday, December 19, 2014 at the age of 87.
life, Kompiang was bestowed with the religious title of Ida Pedanda Gde Ngurah Karang acknowledging his transitinh role as a spiritual leader of the community.

Kompiang's biographer, Professor I Nyoman Darma Putra, told Radar Bali that the tourism industry owes a debt of gratitude to "Bapak Kompiang" for his efforts to promote Bali tourism dating from the 1950s. In addition, he noted that Kompiang and his wife were the first local entrepreneurs to erect a hotel on Sanur Beach in 1956.

That hotel - the Segara Village - was constructed by Ida Bagus Kompiang a full ten years before Bali's historic Bali Beach Hotel opened its doors. The original hotel has been expanded and improved over the years and has now become a tourist accommodation landmark in Sanur.

In the 1960s at the request of the Republic ,Kompiang organized innovative Indonesian Floating Fairs using a cruise ship to promote Indonesian tourism in Hawaii, Japan, Hong Kong, the Philippines, Thailand and Singapore. The ship carried tourism professionals and an arts team from Sanur to showcase Bali tourism at each port of call.

He also served for a period as the Honorary Consul of Sweden, Norway, Finland and Denmark in Bali.

Kompiang was also fundamental in establishing the Bali chapter of the Indonesian Hotel and Restaurant Association (PHRI-Bali). He was also a past chairman of the Indonesian Legion of Armed Forces Veterans (LVRI) in connection with his service in the national struggle for Independence.

Cremation and religious ceremonies to mark the passage of Ida Pedanda Gde Ngurah Karang are still in preparation.

Shown on Balidiscovery.com Ida Bagus Kompiang and his wife, Anak Agung Mirah Asthuti Kompiang, circa 1951.

Related Article

Ibu Kompiang – Grand Dame of Sanur Tourism


 
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