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Bali is already open to tourists from 19 countries




Jakarta (CNN) – The islands of Indonesia, Bali and Riau, will reopen to visitors from 19 countries starting Thursday, according to the country’s Minister of Maritime Affairs and Investments, Luhut Binsar Panjaitan.

“We have given permission to 19 countries to be able to travel to Bali and the Riau Islands,” Luhut announced at a meeting in Jakarta on Wednesday.

The countries are: China, India, Japan, South Korea, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, New Zealand, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, Liechtenstein, Italy, France, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Poland, Hungary and Norway.

The United States is not yet on the approved list.

Tourist visas must be obtained in advance.

Countries were selected from data showing low positivity rates, Luhut said.

Travelers from the countries can enter the islands of Bali and Riau as long as they meet the requirements before and on arrival, Luhut said.

Eligible travelers must be fully vaccinated with a second vaccine at least 14 days before traveling to Indonesia, have insurance coverage for Covid-19 treatment worth a minimum of US $ 100,000 and pay for their own accommodation for a quarantine period of five days.

“One of the reasons for the optimism behind Bali’s preparation was that vaccination against Covid-19 reached 99 per cent for the first dose and 90 per cent for the second dose,” he said. Henky Hotma P. Manurung said, according to a report from the Antara state press.

Luhut added that the reopening will be evaluated periodically and that “this list of 19 countries only applies specifically to direct flights to Bali and the Riau Islands.”

He hoped the implementation would boost that in Bali tourism-dependent economy. It is estimated that 54% of the island’s revenue comes from the tourism industry.

Bali’s Ngurah Rai Airport (DPS) in Denpasar is set to welcome international arrivals on Thursday, Taufan Yudhistira, stakeholder relations manager for the Ngurah Rai International Airport Authority, told CNN.

However, international flights are not yet scheduled to arrive, Yudhistira said.

Picture of Ngurah Rai airport in Bali, Indonesia, by AP / Firdia Lisnawati