"The number of foreign tourists from China, India, and France has increased," Yahya stated here on Tuesday.
The minister noted that tourists from the three countries are still targeting Indonesias three main destinations, namely Bali (40 percent), Jakarta (30 percent), Riau Islands (20 percent), and the remaining 10 percent in other regions.
Arief explained that the Chinese tourists were fond of marine tourism and marine cuisine.
"Jakarta becomes a destination for Chinese tourists who love shopping. Riau Islands and Bintan are usually visited on weekends by Chinese tourists who want to buy clothes and goods.
Meanwhile, most of French tourists spend their holidays in Bali.
"Indian tourists go to Bali for celebrating weddings. Meanwhile, they go to Jakarta for business affairs," he remarked.
To accommodate more tourists, the government has prepared 10 new tourist destinations such as Bandung, Yogyakarta, Banyuwangi, Lombok, and Medan
The government is also developing 10 priority tourist destinations to attract more foreign tourists.
Yayha earlier described the 10 destinations as Indonesia's "New Bali," adding that they had been chosen by President Jokowi this year.
The 10 prioritized tourism destinations are Lake Toba (North Sumatra), Belitung (Bangka Belitung), Tanjung Lesung (Banten), the Seribu Islands (Jakarta), Borobudur Temple (Central Java), Mount Bromo (East Java), Mandalika Lombok (West Nusa Tenggara), Komodo Island (East Nusa Tenggara), Wakatobi National Park (Southeast Sulawesi), and Morotai (North Maluku).
Arief remarked that the acceleration of the development of these destinations is aimed at improving the infrastructure and accessibility, particularly through the development of airports, seaports, roads, and energy, to promote it to investors.
"The development of the 10 prioritized tourism destinations is intended to support the efforts to achieve the target of 20 million visitors in 2019. It is a strategy to maintain double-digit growth. We have the projection that the 10 destinations will attract up to 12 million tourist arrivals," the tourism minister stated.(*)