JAKARTA (Reuters) – Indonesia’s holiday island of Bali will start welcoming travelers from all countries from the end of the week, officials said on Monday, more than three months after announcing it was open to certain nationalities.

Although Bali has officially opened https://www.reuters.com/world/asia-pacific/doubts-over-demand-eve-indonesias-bali-reopening-2021-10-13 to visitors from China, New Zealand and Japan among other countries in mid-October, there have been no direct flights since, Tourism Minister Sandiaga Uno said at a press briefing.

The reopening follows similar announcements from Thailand https://reut.rs/3g9Lp2r and the Philippines https://reut.rs/3HkLU5N, which suspended quarantine waivers in December due to initial uncertainty over vaccine efficacy against the Omicron variant of COVID-19. 19.

The decision comes despite a steady rise in COVID-19 cases in Indonesia this month, despite outbreaks being brought under control in the second half of last year. Health authorities attributed this increase to Omicron.

Known for its surfing, temples, waterfalls and nightlife, Bali attracted 6.2 million foreign visitors in 2019, the year before COVID-19 hit, but strict pandemic border restrictions have devastated tourism, which generally accounts for 54% of its economy.

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Singapore Airlines announced on Friday that it will resume flights to Bali from Singapore from February 16.

Chief Minister Luhut Pandjaitan said that from February 4, international visitors vaccinated against COVID-19 would still be required to do between five and seven days of quarantine.

Last week, Indonesia opened two islands close to Singapore to visitors to the city-state.

According to Ida Ayu Indah Yustikarini, an official with the Bali Government Tourism Board, the island has received foreign visitors in recent months via the capital Jakarta, but no official figures were available.

(Reporting by Stanley Widianto; Writing by Kate Lamb and Stanley Widianto; Editing by Ed Davies, Martin Petty)

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