THE INDONESIA’S Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy held a Travel Exchange (TRAVEX) which is a business forum for tourism businesses between ASEAN countries.

According to the Minister of Tourism and Creative Economy, Sandiaga Uno in his statement, Wednesday (02/01), 2023, said TRAVEX is one of the main agendas of the ASEAN Tourism Forum (ATF) 2023 which will be held on February 3-5, 2023, at the Jogja Expo Center (JEC). So, TRAVEX is a tourism exchange that brings together fellow tourism businesses as buyers and sellers.

“A number of programs at TRAVEX have also become important agendas for the tourism industry and the community during ATF 2023. Among them are B2B exhibitor and seller sessions consisting of ASEAN NTOs, ASEAN Tourism Industries, Travel and Tourism Hospitality Industries, hotels & accommodation industries, TA/TO, and MICE players,” he said.

He explained, there was also a B2C session which would be a place for direct transactions between businesses and customers through the Indonesian Tourism Exhibition, Culinary Festival, and Creative Economy Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) Exhibition. This B2C session is a historical record because it is the first in the history of ATF. To stimulate sales, there will also be a free shipping promo program. Products at the exhibition can be shipped across ASEAN free of charge.

“Another thing that is different is that this year’s ATF will also feature an art exhibition. A number of paintings and umbrellas by Indonesian artists were showcased to the international audience. An art exhibition within the ATF, or we can call it: ArTF,” he remarked.

TRAVEX features 157 sellers and 136 buyers. Buyers came from 29 countries including 9 ASEAN countries, 6 Asian countries, 9 European countries, 5 Middle East countries, 1 North America, and Australia.

“Through TRAVEX, it is hoped that it will not only showcase and promote tourism destinations, but also the diversity of the MSME industry and its creative economy. All of this is appropriate to be displayed at such a precious moment like today, especially since we have a variety of rich destinations and MSME products and the creative economy from various parts of the archipelago,” Sandiaga said.

Furthermore, Minister Sandiaga said that the theme carried out at the ATF this time was “ASEAN: A Journey to Wonderful Destinations”.

This theme represents the main expectations of the tourism sector in developing major regional and international tourist destinations. As well as strengthening ASEAN’s position as an accelerator of economic growth and job creation.

The organization of ATF 2023 also marks the second time Yogyakarta has hosted ATF after it was previously held in 2002.

“The success of this ATF will be the key to tourism development in ASEAN countries in the future. And it is a strategic momentum for Indonesia to be able to attract more foreign tourists so that we can achieve the target of 7.4 million visits in 2023,” Sandiaga concluded. []