Business News/ News / World/  Bali likely to end visa-on-arrival for tourist from Russia, and Ukraine; here's why

Indonesia's famous holiday destination Bali has seen rise in Russian and Ukrainian tourist ever since the war started between the two countries in 2022. Though the arrival of tourist is not a problem for the Balinese authorities, but those who fleeing the war have created trouble in the island nation. 

The authorities in Bali have asked the central immigration agency to cancel visa-on-arrival policy for Russian and Ukrainian nationals after they were were found in incidents involving misbehavior, while some overstaying or working illegally. As reported by CNN, some visitors are working illegally as hairdressers, unauthorized tour guides and even taxi drivers. 

Russian nationals are among the biggest groups of foreign arrivals in Indonesia, according to official tourism data.

In 2022, 58,000 Russian and 7,000 Ukrainians visited Bali after the borders were reopened, CNN has reported citing Indonesian government data. The report further showed that in the month of January 2023, Bali saw 22,500 Russian while 2500 Ukrainian tourist on the island.

Last week, Bali Governor I Wayan Koster had said that he asked the Ministry of Law and Human Rights to tighten visa requirements by cancelling the visa-on-arrival facility specifically for Russian and Ukrainian citizens due to a series of violations.

A recent report by Bloomberg stated that Indonesia deported 47 people as tourist destination Bali cracks down on foreigners misusing their visas to work, of which 13 are Russian. They were deported for violating their stay conditions and misusing the residence permit.

Anggiat Napitupulu, the regional head for the legal ministry told Bloomberg that one Ukrainian citizen is also undergoing court process after was found holding a fake Indonesian national ID. Last month, a Russian tourist was detained by the police after riding while under the influence of alcohol and crashing into a local rider, causing him to be hospitalized. In January, a Ukrainian tourist and a Russian visitor died in a road traffic collision.

Over the weekend, hundreds of law enforcement officers kicked off a five-day operation to crack down on criminal activities, especially among tourists, ahead of the Balinese day of silence on Wednesday.

"Because they are at war, so they flocked to Bali, including those who sought comfort or came to work here," Governor Koster had said, according to a post on the immigration agency's Instagram account as reported by Reuters.

Indonesia allows nationals of certain countries to apply for a visa upon landing in the country, while others have to apply before departure.

Known for its beaches, temples, waterfalls and nightlife, Bali drew 6.2 million foreign visitors in 2019, the year before the pandemic.

Earlier, the Indonesian island was also planning to ban foreign tourists from using motorbikes after series of cases has been seen related to people breaking traffic laws. Under the new proposals, foreign tourist will be allowed to travel in cars provided by travel agents. According to the local police records, over 170 foreign nationals violated traffic orders from late February to early March, as reported by BBC. "If you are a tourist, then act like a tourist," Governor Koster had said. As per the report, the proposed ban is likely to be implemented via regional law this year. However, it’s unclear how the ban would be upheld.

(With inputs from agencies)


Catch all the Business News, Market News, Breaking News Events and Latest News Updates on Live Mint. Download The Mint News App to get Daily Market Updates.
More Less
Updated: 20 Mar 2023, 04:10 PM IST
Recommended For You
Get alerts on WhatsApp
Set Preferences My Reads Watchlist Feedback Redeem a Gift Card Logout