Local News

Immigration promises to get tough on tourist visa holders working remotely in Bali

Beware, tourist visa-holding remote workers in Bali. Immigration says they’re onto you, and will not hesitate to get tough on visa violators.

The Justice and Human Rights Ministry’s office in Bali, which oversees immigration matters, said it recently received tips about foreigners working remotely from Bali on tourist visas.

“They may be working from hotels or wherever they’re staying. But they work [for companies] in their home countries. So they work online,” Jamaruli Manihuruk, who heads the Bali office, said.

“If there are foreigners on tourist visas but they’re working from Bali, we won’t hesitate to act. If the public sees or knows about them, please report them to our officers.”

Jamaruli noted that no such violators have been caught thus far. Those who are caught may face deportation.

According to immigration data, there are currently 112 thousand foreigners staying in Bali. (coconuts.co 24/01/2022)


Finance Minister Tells Bali To Stop Relying On Tourism

The Finance Minister of Indonesia, Sri Mulyani Indrawati, has asked Bali to develop industries beyond the tourism sector.

During her speech on Monday (17/1), Sri Mulyani suggested that the Bali provincial government should start developing another industry, such as agriculture, to support its economy. This is to supplement the growing international demand for organic food products.

“Bali has great potential with its Subak irrigation system and land potential for organic farming. These can help revive the economy during the pandemic,” Sri Mulyani said.

She reminds Bali to use this Covid-19 pandemic as a lesson to stop relying on one source of income. She also said that Bali needs to develop its Small and Medium Businesses (UMKM).

“The UMKM industry makes up 61.07 percent of our GDP. It was able to absorb 97 percent of the total workforce and 60 percent of the total investment in Indonesia,” Sri Mulyani added.

She also explained that the central government would provide massive support to the UMKM industry by offering loans, interest rate subsidies, and technical assistance to the participants. “The government will provide technical assistance to help our UMKM reach global markets and increase our export rate,” Sri Mulyani concluded.

The Government Investment Center (PIP), an official Public Service Agency (BLU), was created to support the growth of UMKM, with eventual expansion to the global market. (thebalisun.com 24/01/2022)


Bill Gates And Rockefeller Foundations Ask President To Host A Meeting In Bali

The Indonesian President, Joko Widodo (Jokowi), has received letters from two of the world’s biggest foundations requesting a meeting in Bali.

The Maritime and Investment Ministry coordinator, Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan, confirmed that the President had received letters from the Bill Gates and Rockefeller Foundations, asking him for permission to hold a meeting.

They intend to discuss the climate change issues in Bali and host an event scheduled to be held on April 2022.

“After the President received the letters, he asked me about the purpose of their visit to Bali. I told him that I didn’t know exactly, but they proposed that he attend the event to be held in April this year,” Luhut said.

Luhut also stated that the President expressed his willingness to attend the event.

The President wants to discuss the climate change and waste management problem in Indonesia. He also wants to talk about the Small and Medium Businesses (UMKM) in Indonesia.

“The President is excited to attend the event, and he will likely give one or two days of his schedule to talk about the nation’s Small and Medium Businesses (UMKM) with them. You can imagine how much attention Indonesia got from the international world,” Luhut concluded. (thebalisun.com 23/01/2022)


Indonesia Facing Gigantic Task of Hosting MotoGP Round

Indonesian authorities are making final preparations to host the country’s first MotoGP race since 1997 in the resort island of Lombok where spectators will outnumber the available accommodation.

The Pertamina Mandalika International Circuit can house 200,000 people but Lombok has only around 16,000 hotel rooms.

“During the initial sales, 63,000 tickets including the VIP class were sold out immediately on January 6. We plan to sell more tickets online so that a total of 100,000 seats will be booked in the build-up to the race in March,” Hadi Tjahjanto, the field commander of the event, said in a recent gathering with a number of media companies.

“And I need to inform you that all regular flights to Lombok on March 18 through 20 are already fully booked,” he added.

The former Indonesian Military chief also said Lombok International Airport will receive over 21,000 arrivals every day before and during the event, a quadruple number than normal days.

The organizers are facing the gigantic task of providing accommodation for the international event. Homestay and tourist spot owners are encouraged to open at maximum capacity for more rooms.

“We will deploy cruise ships and ferries belonging to Pelni to add accommodation on coastal areas,” Hadi said, referring to the state-owned sea transportation company.

Some of the visitors including foreigners may stay in nearby Bali Island and come to Lombok on race day on ferries or shuttle flights.

The first test comes on February 7 when all MotoGP riders and teams will arrive for pre-season tests, although the number of arrivals won’t reach a burdensome level.

Hadi said there will be a major rehearsal for air, sea, and land traffic management two weeks before the March 20 race day to get the island fully prepared for an extraordinary surge in arrivals.

The construction of the grandstand, VIP village, race control room, and electricity supplies has been completed.

But the Ministry of Public Works is still working on road extension to the circuit and an observation deck scheduled for completion on March 14, Hadi said.

Riders and crew members will be subject to the travel bubble policy because they won’t meet the mandatory five-day quarantine from their arrival on February 7 to the first day of the test on the 11th.

They all will be isolated from any public event and strictly guarded upon arrival from the immigration checkpoints to their hotels, which will be “sterilized” two days prior to check-in, Hadi said.

The brand new circuit has successfully held its inaugural international grand prix in November when it hosted the World Superbike final round, but Indonesian authorities expect the volume of arrivals to triple in the upcoming MotoGP race.

“MotoGP is a display of our accomplishment at the global stage because it has a huge number of fans in Indonesia and around the world,” Information and IT Minister Johnny Plate said.

“In addition, we are going to host the G-20 Summit and related events throughout the year, so yes 2022 is a very busy year for us. Both events become the major national agenda and we must ensure a great success.”

The Indonesian round will become the second race in the 2022 MotoGP calendar after Qatar. (jakartaglobe.id 22/01/2022)


Bali bids King Pemecutan goodbye in grand cremation ceremony

Thousands of Balinese braved pandemic restrictions and flooded the streets of the resort island’s capital on Friday to send off the king in a lavish cremation ceremony.

The extensive ritual for Anak Agung Ngurah Manik Parasara, who died in late December at the age of 76, started on January 2 and continued until the main event on Friday.

Enthusiastic locals and tourists crowded the ceremony in Denpasar on the Hindu-majority island for the traditional royal cremation ceremony — or “pelebon” — held to release the soul of the departed.

Once that is complete, it is believed, they will be able to reach the upper realm where the soul awaits rebirth.

Royal family members paraded past shaded by gilded black umbrellas, while dozens of men in traditional Balinese dress carried the king’s body in a colourful 10-metre tall wooden tower, along with a massive Ogoh Ogoh, or demon statue.

The remains of Parasara — who was known as the King of Pemecutan — were cremated and his ashes will be thrown into the sea. Parasara was known as a spiritual leader and an advocate of religious tolerance.

However, in 2004 he was found guilty of murder after he stabbed his step-brother to death in a family feud. He was released after serving one year in Bali’s Kerobokan prison. Bali governor Wayan Koster had ordered all officials involved to take a COVID-19 test before the event.

“Usually the tower is not that high. But, because the passing one was a royal family member, the tower is very high. Photography-wise the view is fantastic!” Gung Ngurah Dika, who came with his friend to take pictures, told AFP. (TheJakartaPost.com 16/01/2022)