THE government prepares and immediately distributes tourism grants of IDR3.3 trillion for tourism business players and local governments to help improve the implementation of health protocols in tourist destinations so as to create a sense of security and comfort for tourists while helping the tourism industry survive the pandemic.

According to Minister of Tourism and Creative Economy, Wishnutama Kusubandio, in his statement, Tuesday (13/10), said that tourism grants through the Ministry of Finance are part of the National Economic Recovery (PEN) program initiated by the government in an effort to deal with the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The main purpose of this tourism grant is to help local governments and the hotel and restaurant industry which are currently experiencing financial disruption and recovery from the decline in regional revenue (PAD) due to the COVID-19 pandemic with a period of implementation until December 2020,” Wishnutama said.

He added, regions with Hotel Tax and Restaurant Tax (PHPR) criteria of at least 15% of the total PAD for the 2019 fiscal year, 10 Priority Tourism Destinations (DPP) and 5 Super Priority Tourism Destinations (DSP), Branding Destinations and 100 Calendar of Events (CoE).

Minister Wishnutama explained that the grant funds given to local governments divided by a balance of 70% were allocated for direct assistance to the hotel and restaurant industry. Meanwhile, 30% for local governments is used to handle the economic and social impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, especially in the tourism sector and the creative economy.

“The process of disbursing funds was submitted by the regional head to the Ministry of Finance referring to technical recommendations issued by the Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy,” Wishnutama noted.

The Ministry of Tourism has also prepared a budget of IDR119 billion for the free Cleanliness, Health, Safety and Environmental Sustainability (CHSE) certification program for the tourism industry in 34 provinces in Indonesia. This certification is to ensure cleanliness, health, safety, and environmental sustainability for industries related to the tourism sector to restore public trust.

“So that tourism players, hotel managers and restaurants can immediately improve the preparation of hygiene, health and security protocols in accordance with the COVID-19 health protocol,” he affirmed.

Wishnutama explained that the Ministry of Tourism through the Deputy for Industry and Investment will conduct socialization of the 2020 Tourism Grant Program periodically. For initial activities, socialization was held on October 8, 2020 at the Novotel Hotel Tangerang, Banten. Activities were also carried out in a hybrid meeting involving 101 districts/cities in Indonesia.

“Through the 2020 Tourism Grant Funds Outreach activity, it is hoped that local governments will obtain information related to the tourism grant fund program, including technical tourism grants, tourism grant management to local governments, financial management and reporting and technical distribution of tourism grant funds,” Wishnutama concluded. []