"King Salman will be in Jakarta and Bogor, West Java, from March 1 to 3, 2017 to participate in state activities. Then, King Salman and his entourage of about 1.5 thousand people, including 10 ministers and 25 princes will make a visit to Bali from March 4 to 9, 2017," Saudi Ambassador to Indonesia Osama bin Mohammed Abdullah Al Shuaibi stated in a press conference here on Tuesday.
During King Salman's visit in Bali, the ambassador said that the tourism destinations will not be closed.
"There is no special agenda in Bali. King Salman and his entourage will enjoy the natural beauty of the island," the ambassador remarked.
Osama pointed out that King Salman and his entourage will stay at numerous luxury hotels in Nusa Dua, Badung District. The journalists are not allowed to cover King Salman's activities during his vacation in Bali.
In terms of security, Saudi government has entrusted the security efforts to the Police and the Presidential Security Detail (Paspampres).
Indonesian Hotel and Restaurant Association (PHRI) Chairman for Bali Tjokorda Oka Artha Ardana Sukawati earlier remarked that King Salman's visit will promote Balis tourism in the Middle East. The kings holiday in Bali would inspire not only others from Saudi but also businessmen from other Middle East countries to visit Bali.
According to Tourism Minister Arief Yahya, the number of Middle East visitors to Indonesia is still low, at under 200 thousand, or still lesser than 300 thousand and 600 thousand tourists visiting Malaysia and Thailand, respectively.
The kings planned visit to Bali is expected to boost national tourism.
"If the king comes to Bali, then other people will visit too. This is a golden opportunity for Indonesia to promote tourism," the minister asserted in Bali on Thursday (Feb 23).
After all, travelers from the Middle East are premium-class tourists, with a high spending capacity of approximately US$2,000 in a single visit.
The profile and popularity of Bali are believed to rise sharply following the arrival of an influential global figure. King Salmans visit will be a historic moment for Indonesia, since the last visit of a Saudi King to the country was in 1970, or 47 years ago. (WDY)