The Jakarta Post
Coordinating Economic Minister Darmin Nasution has acknowledged the government was late in learning about shifts in spending patterns, particularly among middle-class citizens, who have started spending more on leisure activities.
“We have not suitably considered the shifting trend in our policies. We need to start developing tourism destinations, such as improving the condition of our national parks,” Darmin said in Jakarta on Monday.
He said there had been a shift in consumption patterns from retail consumption to leisure activities.
Meanwhile, economist Ari Kuncoro of the University of Indonesia said the government had to be more serious about developing the nation's tourism industry, by improving the connectivity and accessibility of all tourist destinations across the country.
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“The government must utilize this growing trend toward leisure activities by improving infrastructure, such as repairing roads connecting to tourism destinations,” he said.
Such a trend can positively contribute to economic growth through its multiplier effects including the creation of various new economic activities, he added.
“This trend is part of a change in consumption patterns. Many people who work in hotels and restaurants benefit from the trend,” he said.
Data from the Central Statistics Agency (BPS) shows that spending in the restaurant and hotel sector grew by 5.87 percent year-on-year (yoy) during the second quarter of this year, up from 5.51 percent in the same period last year. (rdi/bbn)