A senior member of the Indonesian government reckons a travel bubble with Bali and Australia could still be on the cards for September this year, which gives us something to look forward to.
Speaking in Jakarta, Indonesia’s Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs and Investment Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan said his government is still in talks with a bunch of countries, including our own.
“Right now we engaged in discussions with Australia, with China, South Korea and Japan so far, and Abu Dhabi as well,” he told reporters.
“We will see what they need from us, what we need from them.”
He also noted that Aussies “especially love Bali.”
Like Australia and pretty much every other country, Indonesia’s borders are currently shut to tourists, but it’s looking to restart that all-important industry as soon as safely possible.
Luhut added that the country wouldn’t simply reopen to all tourists, but rather to a select few countries that have handled the pandemic to a satisfactory level.
“We have to carefully select the tourists who come to Bali,” he said.
“So I think Australia, New Zealand maybe later on, and China of course, maybe South Korea and Japan. We are thinking about that. We study this carefully day to day.”
Although Bali plans to reopen to international tourists on September 11 (the island already reopened to domestic tourists last month) the Australian government will still need to allow people to return.
That means getting to a point where Aussies coming home from a trip in Bali won’t have to quarantine for 14 days.
Over 3,800 coronavirus cases have been recorded in Bali alone, around 450 of which are still active, according to the provincial government. Indonesia as a whole has seen over 127,000 cases in total.
But numbers aside, the ball’s very much in our court. Just yesterday, Scott Morrison warned that most restrictions would likely stay in place through Christmas, meaning we’re in this shit for the long haul.