Bali: APEC 2013
According to the Governor of Bali Made Mangku Pastika, the success of the 2013 APEC summit in Nusa Dua has further improved the image of Bali on a global stage.
Mr. Pastika went on to state that post-APEC, Bali has made a lot of progress in various fields. “Bali now has one of the best airports in Indonesia, the most beautiful highway, underpasses and many new hotels,” said Pastika in Denpasar yesterday.
“Thanks to APEC, now the whole world now knows Bali. There were 3,000 journalists from 800 news agencies who came to Bali covering the APEC summit, and they broadcast every day from Bali which was an incredible promotion,” he continued, adding that APEC has proven that Bali can handle large conferences, such as the WTO to be held next month. “It’s not simple and very expensive, but we have shown we can provide security, logistics and so on,” said Pastika.
Meanwhile, Deputy Governor of Bali, Ketut Sudikerta hit back at complaints that many local people have not felt the benefits of the event. Sudikerta reinforced the importance of APEC to Bali and it’s people, as it has boosted the image of the region which will benefit all residents either directly or indirectly.
“Who says they did not benefit from the impact of the implementation of the APEC?,” demanded Sudikerta after chairing a meeting with entrepreneurs and leaders at the Bali Governor’s office in Denpasar yesterday. According to him, the APEC summit was a positive for all society, especially local merchants and those working in the tourism industry. “It’s only certain people complaining, I strongly believe everyone gets the benefit,” he said.
Among those who may have cause to complain are numerous small traders and fishermen in Nusa Dua and Tuban, who were unable to work during the APEC summit because of restrictions. The fishermen were prohibited from engaging in activities at sea in the area of Ngurah Rai Airport and a few zones in around South Badung due to the tight security.
“We were asked to find alternative fishing areas because our usual places, especially near the airports they were banned. Due to these different fishing grounds, the catches dropped dramatically,” explained local fishing fleet co-op spokesman I Made Sugita.
Similar complaints have been voiced from a number of vehicle rental groups whose services were not utilised by conference organisers.
Lastly, according to data released, a total of 650 flights to and from Ngurah Rai Bali airport were canceled due to the arrival and departure of APEC heads of state and delegates.
“During the airport closures, as much as 52 percent of the regular flights had to be cancelled,” said PR Angkasa Pura I Ngurah Rai Bali Sherly Yunita in a statement.
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