Central Lombok – The Coordinating Ministry for Economic Affairs will formulate necessary policies to ensure equitable economic development in Indonesian regions.
“The president has called on the coordinating minister to create policies to address the development gaps in regions,” Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs Darmin Nasution stated during a working visit to the Special Economic Zone (SEZ) of Mandalika in Central Lombok District, West Nusa Tenggara Province, on Saturday.
He said the ministry had begun disseminating information and making necessary efforts to ensure even development across Indonesia’s regions. According to Nasution, one of the aims of the Indonesian government’s policies is to combine economic growth and equitable inter-regional development by setting up SEZs or industrial areas.
The development of SEZs is expected to be one of the government’s efforts to overcome the economic downturn in Indonesia that has been witnessed since 1998.
One of the efforts being taken is developing SEZs in the tourism sector in several provinces, including the SEZ of Mandalika in Central Lombok District. The government has continued to focus on developing industries engaged in the management of natural resources in SEZs, such as the palm oil commodity on the island of Sumatra. “Why (are we focusing on developing) tourism? This is because tourism is not only growing in Jakarta and Java but is also developing throughout the regions based on the local potential,” he noted.
Every region needs its own brand and trademark to develop the tourism sector in the SEZs, he noted. Hence, a tourist area needs to be combined with a leading local commodity industry, such as a pearl center at the Mandalika SEZ.
Moreover, the development of tourism areas should cater to the needs of infrastructure, security and comfort, as well as health and cleanliness. “After meeting the needs of the three main aspects, (the government and community) should then develop a variety of attractions, in the form of art or products that can attract people to visit,” he added.