Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Asian-African Carnival to become annual event in Bandung

As part of a week-long program to celebrate the Asian-African Conference's 60th anniversary, the Asian-African Carnival was held on April 25.

Around 70 countries had participated in the carnival, including China, India and Egypt.

The carnival started with Bandung Mayor Ridwan Kamil and Tourism Minister Arief Yahya greeting the eager spectators from the top of a Bandung tour bus.

With the starting point of Bandung's Simpang Lima, the carnival participants then started to grace Jl. Asia-Afrika, showcasing not only their extravagantly colorful costumes, but also displaying the cultural and artistic performances of their countries of origin.

The carnival excited its spectators, many of whom were visitors and foreigners.

Many Bandung residents were also awed when the city finally hosted a lavish carnival such as the world renowned Jember Fashion Carnival.

Earlier this week on May 4, Mayor Ridwan shared the news regarding the Asian-African Conference anniversary in Bandung.

With the huge financial success gained from the foreign exchange after a week full of Asian-African Conference-inspired events, the Tourism Ministry set out to make Bandung one of its top priorities for developing urban tourism in Indonesia, the mayor announced.

This means that, in the future, the Tourism Ministry will hold more events in Bandung, such as the carnival.

"Therefore, the Asian-African Carnival is set to be one of Bandung's annual events," the mayor said.

Bandung set to lure more foreign tourists

The government has substantially increased its target for foreign tourist arrivals to Bandung, West Java, according to Bandung Mayor Ridwan Kamil.

“The tourism ministry has assigned me to raise the number of foreign tourist arrivals to Bandung from 90,000 visits per year to 500,000 visits,” Ridwan said in Bandung on Monday as quoted by tempo.co.

Ridwan said Tourism Minister Arief Yahya advised him to formulate a new strategy to boost tourism.

The tourism minister previously declared the successful Asia-Africa Carnival, which was held on April 25 during the 60th anniversary of Asian-African Conference, would become an annual event.

The move was seen as a part of the ministry’s effort to attract 10.06 million foreign visitors to Indonesia this year, an increase of 7 percent from the 2014 target.

Ridwan also revealed his plan to involve underprivileged families in the effort to boost Bandung tourism.

“I am designing a program in which underprivileged families would be empowered to make souvenirs related to Bandung,” Ridwan said, adding that the program was expected to enable low-income people to take advantage of the expected booming tourist industry in his city.