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Investors With High Demands Trigger Rapid Development In Bali Say Academics 

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The conversation regarding rapid tourism development in Bali has been on everyone’s lips for the past few weeks.

As the post-pandemic development boom continues and a new central and provincial government is about to be sworn in, Bali lovers are voicing their visions for what a healthy and prosperous Bali of the future would look like. 

Bali Villas with Swimming Pool and Gardens.jpg

The headlines have been eclipsed with news of rapid tourism development in Bali, with a heavy focus on the negative implications the situation is having on local communities, tourists, and the environment.

While the negativity is enough to make some Bali lovers rethink their next visit to the island, the conversation is not anything to worry about.

The dialogue serves as an opportunity for leaders, communities, and tourists themselves to consider what it is they want to see on the island. 

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One top tourism academic has spoken to reporters about the impact of rapid hotel development in Bali. Prof. Dr. Drs. I Putu Anom, who is a Professor of Tourism at Udayana University, has shared his assessment that the construction of hotels and villas is now starting to have a negative impact on Bali’s nature.

Prof Anom explained, “I have observed that now there is a lot of construction and permits issued regarding the construction of hotels, especially in southern Bali. But the construction is on the beach, river, or on the edge of a cliff. So, this could damage nature, isn’t that wrong.”

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He called on the government to have stricter regulations regarding spatial planning and land use to help prevent investors from building tourism accommodation in ‘inappropriate’ locations.

Prof Anom said,  “The government cannot sell permits for hotel construction. There must be strict and clear spatial planning regulations and land use.”

Prof Anom continued, “We have to protect Bali’s nature. It is also called the Nangun Sat Kerthi Loka Bali slogan: we must not continue to destroy nature. It’s okay to leave the cliffs like that. If there is a disaster, we will also be the ones in trouble.”

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He added, “I’m worried that one day it will collapse. So the government must be firm, not just pursue PAD and not sell out permits without paying attention to our environment.”

Prof Anom specifically mentioned the rapid development of massive hotel and resort complexes in South Bali, especially around Canggu and Uluwatu.

He said, “There are already a lot of budget hotels in Bali. If the top hotels lower their prices, of course the ones at the bottom will suffer. Poor local residents who have budget hotels, one to three star hotels, they can lose their competition.”


Prof Anom’s concerns have also been echoed by the Chairman of the Bali Villa Association, Putu Gede Hendrawan.

He told reporters that the investment in villas is difficult to handle and slow down since market demand is so high and that licensing is completed through the Online Single Submission (OSS) process directly with the central government. 


Hendrawan said, “It just comes back to the investor’s interests, because they want a quick return on investment, so where there is potential, they will join there.”

“This is what we hope for the government to make breakthroughs on how to make something that will eventually become an investment interest to move to another place so that there is equality. I really hope a breakthrough will emerge.”


He added that he hopes those investors who are constructing villas can join hotel and villa associations so that a collaborative approach can be taken to safeguard Bali’s cultural heritage across the board.

Hendrawan said, “They [investors/developers] must apply the Tri Hatha Karana concept. Indeed, there is no compulsion to join an association because in the Regional Regulation, whether you join an association or not, there are no sanctions, but in order to create a good business climate, an association can be a forum.”

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J West

Saturday 8th of June 2024

Finally, an admission that vodka fueled money laundering is crushing the local economy and devastating the islands ecology.


Thursday 6th of June 2024

Bali needs infrastructure before more tourist development. Wider roads, public transport, a decent waste management system and drinkable water. There is so much garbage on the side of roads and on beaches it is disgusting.


Friday 7th of June 2024

@Darryl, Agree.

True anecdotic story from Jakarta: They replaced a pedestrian bridge outside my office window years ago. An old but solid bridge needed "upgrade". When finished with the new bridge the workmanship was atrocious including the roof full of holes. During rain you had to walk under the roof using the umbrella.

So you see: New projects does not improve on much apart from luxury car sales.

Projects needs to be managed by professionals which is not the case here. In the energy sector, foreign companies execute much better with strict bidding process separating technical and commercial bid evaluation. All as Indonesian are worried they get cheated, while ignoring what happen behind their back.


Thursday 6th of June 2024

Incompetence and greed of the balinese are to blame. They will sell themselves out to the highest bidder


Friday 7th of June 2024

@COK Ace, Agree 🙏


Thursday 6th of June 2024

The wise academics from the universities always get quoted but have completely missed the boat. Where were they a few decades ago hibernating in their bookshelves in their offices? Have they empowered and enlightened their students over the years for them to comprehend and gain positions of influence or governance. The current governance and lack of accountability, urban planning and infrastructure development in Bali is overseen by men who probably left school in grade 6. University is to expensive an excercise for most locals. The money is pouring into Bali and just as quickly pouring out into corrupt deep pockets. Nusa Dua seems to be the only area that has a semblance of care. So that's the right place for a G20 and World water forum and other events to falsify the illusion that all is just gorgeous in the Island of traffic chaos, rubbish strewn rivers, creeks and drains. Add to that underage unlicensed kids hemetless, joyriding around with noisy exhausts. No problems at all. If there is don't point it out and blame it all on tourists. They are not the ones consuming two minute noodles, plastic water cups and throwing any plastic trash on the roadside and into any opening. Thats not an issue because you can eventually burn it to add to the ever appearing smog flowing healthily through the air. Anyone seen the mountains lately are they still there?

Steve b

Thursday 6th of June 2024

These officials aren't in power to serve the people they seek these positions to fast track their pockets their bank accounts. The smiling corruptors. There were laws passed years ago to stop new hotels etc but it never stopped and the officials policing it get a cut of the pie as well. CORRUPTION it's everywhere