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Bali Immigration Outline Potential Impact Of 2024 Election On Tourists

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Ahead of the Indonesian general election in early 2024, officials in Bali have given their assurances that neither the campaign nor the election itself will negatively impact tourists.

However, as the big vote approaches, Bali Immigration officers say that departments are getting their operations in order. 

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In Buleleng Regency the Singaraja Immigration Foreigners Monitoring Team (Pora) has held a meeting with the Election Supervisory Agency (Bawaslu) and the General Election Commission (KPU) to discuss how the upcoming election could impact the office’s operation. 

Speaking to reporters after the meeting, the Head of the Intelligence and Immigration Enforcement Section at the Singaraja Immigration Office, Hendy Kurnia Darmawan, explained that one of the discussion points was how to deal with foreigners who have violated the law during the election period and as the new government is established.

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Darmawan said that the types of immigration violations and issues that are of concern regard the completion of documents, including passports, visas, and residence permits.

Although the Singaraja Immigration Office has not suggested that there will be any delay in processes during this period, they want to ensure that any immigration violations happening in their jurisdiction are dealt with before February 14th, 2024, the election day.

What can be taken from this is that even more effort will be taken to round up badly behaved foreigners in the area in the run-up to the election, in alignment with the work of the Tourism Task Force.

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Darmawan said, “We hope that what is discussed is not just discussion material, and there must be concrete steps in creating synergy between the Singaraja Immigration Office and related agencies regarding the activities and whereabouts of foreigners, as well as finding solutions to problems involving foreigners in the field.”

As for tourists visiting Bali from now until mid-February, officials have given their assurances that vacations and travel plans will not be affected by the political activity.

In many parts of the world, tourists are advised to reconsider traveling to certain destinations during times of political change. However, Indonesia is set to experience a smooth transition of leadership. 

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The election day coincides with the introduction of the Bali tourism tax. The new local tourism levy will come into effect on Wednesday 14th November and will require every international arrival to Bali to pay IDR 150,000. 

The Regional Secretary of Bali, Dewa Made Indra, has issued statements confirming that the election will not interfere with the introduction of the new tourism tax.

The Bali tourism tax is a policy that was put into legislation by the ex-Governor of Bali, Wayan Koster, before this term finished in September.

Final details are yet to be released about the controversial new tax, but officials have confirmed that tourists will be able to pay before or on arrival. 

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In fact, the Head of the Bali Tourism Office has said that the payment on arrival will be able to be made by card and will take just 23 seconds.

Speaking to reporters Secretary Indra said “The election experience is not the first time, but rather carried out several times. Previously, elections had never created conditions that disrupted tourism [in Bali]. We remain optimistic that the election will go well, and tourism will continue to grow well.”

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He added “Previous experience shows that tourists are actually interested in holding elections in our area because the elections are safe, they come to the polling stations wearing traditional clothing, the atmosphere is calm. 

“In the experience of previous elections, several countries sent observers to Bali to carry out monitoring.”

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Indra said that the Election Supervisory Agency, known as Bawaslu, is on hand to ensure that the election is carried out seamlessly and without impacting tourists’ enjoyment on vacation.

He said “This is the importance of the existence of Bawaslu. If Bawaslu can maintain it well, the election is carried out well, it will not cause any disturbance for tourists.” 

Indra concluded, “Our hope is to realize an election with integrity.”

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Robert Sablin

Monday 4th of December 2023

It can be very dangerous, suggest to stay away from Indo at that time, since there is no viable police force.

Wayan Bo

Friday 1st of December 2023

🇮🇱Especially potential tourists from Israel expect from new elected government excellent bilateral relationship in near future as well as visa free travels.🇮🇩