Jakarta - The Indonesian government planned to further develop halaal tour, in a bid to woo foreign visitors as the country set a target of receiving 20 million tourists by 2019.
Halaal tour, or Muslim-friendly tour, was expected to contribute 5 million foreign tourist visits to Indonesia by 2019, Head of Halal Tour Acceleration Development Team at Indonesia's Tourism Ministry Riyanto Sofyan said.
The government would further develop halaal tour branding by actively taking part in related annual international competitions, Riyanto said, adding that the ministry has selected several candidates to take part in the upcoming 2016 World Halal Tour Awards scheduled to be held in Abu Dhabi in December this year
“The strategy to develop halaal tour was by focusing efforts to score victories in international competition. Only then it would further boost the branding and the good results can be seen shortly,” Riyanto told a press conference to announce winners of national halaal tour competition in various categories.
Part of the winners would be nominated to vie in the upcoming world class halaal tour competition in Abu Dhabi, he added.
Indonesia's Lombok island in West Nusa Tenggara province won Halal Tour Destination Award from the same competition last year, Riyanto said, adding that since then significant tourist visit improvement was seen in Lombok.
“We recorded a 50 percent tourist visit growth in Lombok since obtaining the award,” Riyanto added. Even though halal tour was defined as Muslim-friendly tour destination, hospitality and accommodation, it also attracts conventional tourists as well, he added. According to Riyanto Halal tour promises significant business potentials as tourists identified to spend their vacation in halaal tour packages reached 120 million people worldwide with total spending of $142-billion last year.
With orchestrated efforts to develop its tourism sector, Indonesia expected to earn $24-billion from tourism by 2019.