Indonesian Minister of Tourism Arief Yahya has expressed his wish to make Bandung regency a Special Economic Zone (Kawasan Ekonomi Khusus, KEK) as a tourist destination through the development of its existing potential by improving attractions, accessibility and amenities.
The minister considered Ciwidey in the regency in West Java as a place to be developed into a KEK tourist destination because the area was already a popular destination.
Arief stressed the importance of improving access to the destination in the southern part of the city that offered natural beauty to travellers.
“One of the weaknesses of the area is access . . . It should be improved,” he said as quoted by kontan.co.id, adding that in the long run Kertajati International Airport could be a main access point to Ciwidey.
In the short term toward the establishment of the KEK, the tourism ministry had assigned the city to host a number of events, including the 5km Color Run and Independence Festival ahead of the country’s Independence Day.
“In the medium term, Bandung regental administration has to propose the KEK establishment [to the central government]. If the land is limited, the administration could cooperate with other institutions,” Arief said.
He said reactivation of railway tracks in Bandung was an important move to support the tourism industry in Bandung to improve accessibility to tourist destinations. “[With the infrastructure], investors will automatically come to invest,” he added.
There are three autonomous administrations in Bandung – Bandung city, Bandung regency and West Bandung regency.
Bandung city is known as a shopping destination for citizens of neighbouring cities such as Jakarta and neighbouring countries such as Malaysia and Singapore. THE JAKARTA POST/ANN