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Jokowi asks Australian businesses to invest in ASEAN tourism

President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo has invited Australian businesses to invest in ASEAN tourism, saying Asians are spending more on vacations.

“ASEAN, in the future, will become a major tourist destination for middle-class citizens of India and China, which are currently enjoying swift economic growth,” he told businesspeople at the CEO Forum during the ASEAN-Australia Special Summit in Sydney on Saturday.

He said ASEAN countries, including Indonesia, were constructing infrastructure such as roads, railways, airports and seaports to improve connectivity in a number of regions being promoted as tourist destinations.

Jokowi praised Australia for its tourist sector development.

He called on Australian businesses to take their success to AEAN countries. “When commodity prices collapsed several years ago, Australia introduced [the slogan]: ‘Let’s turn the mining boom into dining boom’. Today I ask you to bring your dining boom to Asia,” he said.

Apart from inviting Australian businesspeople to invest in tourism, Jokowi also called on them to do business in the banking sector, stressing that the trend of saving money instead of using it was increasing among Asians.

“It will be an opportunity for Australian banks or other financial institutions to expand to ASEAN. If you do not seize the opportunity, other financial companies will do so,” he said.

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