Immigration officials in Bali have revealed new data that shows how many foreigners have been deported from the island so far this year.
The news comes as the tourism hotspot commits to cracking down on illegal and culturally disrespectful behavior by foreign visitors on the island.
The Bali Regional Office of the Ministry of Law and Human Rights has shared new data regarding deportations from the island in the last 8-months.
The office has also emphasized that the high number of deportations must serve as a reminder to foreigners visiting the island that rules and regulations must be obeyed.
The Head of the Bali Regional Office of the Ministry of Law and Human Rights, Anggiat Napitupulu, told reporters foreigners who want to do business in Bali must take immigration protocols seriously.
He said, “Immigration is an important aspect that must be considered by business actors, both local and foreign, who want to run a business in Indonesia.”
Many of the foreigners who have been deported from Bali so far this year have been caught breaking the rules of their visas.
The tourist visa on arrival allows foreigners to engage in tourism activities and a very limited amount of business-related activities.
What the visa on arrival does not allow foreigners to do is work, generate income, or manage business activities, but rather conduct business meetings and, in some cases, buy products for export.
Napitupulu confirmed to the media that “the number of foreigners deported from Bali as of Tuesday 29th August, was 213 people since January 2023.”
He continued, “They came from 45 countries, with details of 59 foreigners from Russia, 14 from the United States, 13 from the UK, 12 from Australia, and 9 from Nigeria.”
A total of 213 deportations from Bali alone by the end of August is a huge rise compared to the 188 foreigners who were deported from the island in 2022.
Many of the deportations conducted in 2022 were based on visa overstays as a result of the pandemic and international lockdowns.
This year, however, many more deportations have occurred based on foreigners breaking their visa conditions, mostly through attempting to conduct income-generating business activities or working.
There have also been a series of deportations as a result of culturally disrespectful and illegal behavior by foreigners.
This has included disrespectful behavior towards sacred sites such as temples, trees, and mountains, and public displays of nudity.
Commitment by authorities in Bali to crack down on illegal behavior by foreigners suggests that these 213 deportations are just a few of potentially many more to come.
In July Indonesia’s Director General of Immigration announced the launch of a new task force who have been issued with a mission to conduct one hundred immigration control operations every single month.
Many of these operations will undoubtedly result in deportations, given the trends data has shown for the year so far.
While only a small minority, foreign tourists and longer-stay visitors in Bali are breaking the conditions of their visas in a variety of ways and on a regular basis in Bali, which is why the authorities are doubling down on efforts to stamp it out.
Just this week, Ngurah Rai Immigration deported a Croatian man after he was found guilty of using his tourist visa on arrival to market investment properties on the island.
An investigation remains underway on a 27-year-old Russian tourist who was taken in by the authorities amidst what appeared to be a mental health crisis.
The woman, known by her initials AR, was apprehended by authorities after entering a corner shop close to the resort of Uluwatu not wearing clothes and behaving in an aggressive, agitated, and volatile manner.
As a result of a rise in worrying, disrespectful, and illegal behavior by tourists in Bali, authorities from both the provincial and central governments have created an educational awareness campaign to help tourists best understand what is and isn’t acceptable behavior on the island.
This includes a comprehensive list of do’s and don’ts outlining ways to both respect local culture and make the most of a vacation on the Island of the Gods.
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