Indonesia’s geoparks are expected to strengthen the promotion of the country’s tourism and creative economy, and at the same time enhance the development of the tourism sector in this world’s largest archipelagic country.
Jakarta (Indonesia Window) – Minister of Tourism and Creative Economy Sandiaga Salahuddin Uno welcomed the designation of four Indonesia’s geoparks into the UNESCO Global Geoparks (UGG) network.
The minister expressed his hope that the designation of the four Indonesia’s geoparks would strengthen the promotion of the country’s tourism and creative economy, and at the same time enhance the tourism development this world’s largest archipelagic country.
The four geoparks are Ijen UNESCO Global Geopark, Maros Pangkep UNESCO Global Geopark, Merangin Jambi UNESCO Global Geopark, and Raja Ampat UNESCO Global Geopark, the Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy/Tourism and Creative Economy Agency (Kemenparekraf/Baparekraf) noted in a written statement as quoted by Indonesia Window, Friday.
The Raja Ampat tourist destination in Southwest Papua is one of four Indonesian geopark sites that are designated as part of the UNESCO Global Geoparks (UGG) network. (The Indonesian Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy/the Tourism and Creative Economy Agency)The designation of the four geopark sites is based on decisions at the 216th UNESCO Executive Council Meeting in Paris, France, Wednesday (May 24).
Sandiaga who is also the Head of the Indonesian Tourism and Creative Economy Agency said in his statement on Thursday (May 25) that this legitimacy from UNESCO is expected to have a huge impact on the development of tourism and the creative economy, especially for the sustainability of potential preservation (biodiversity and cultural diversity) within each geopark.
“It is also expected to be an effective promotional tool to increase the interest of tourists, not only domestic but also foreign ones. In the end it will have a big impact on the economic growth and open up employment opportunities for the people,” he said.
UNESCO Global Geopark is a geographical area where sites and landscapes that are international geological assets are managed with the concepts of conservation, education and community empowerment in an integrated manner.
Geoparks that receive UNESCO recognition will be developed with a conservation and sustainable development approach involving local communities.
Sandiaga said he would go all out to encourage promotion in the four geoparks that have just been designated in the UGG network and the six others that have previously been recognized so that they would be better known and attract more tourists.
The endeavor includes giving assistance and training to improve human resources to ensure that the diversity that exists within the geoparks is maintained.
In addition, it also ensures that geoparks are geographical areas that have geological heritage and high-value geodiversity, including integrated biodiversity and cultural diversity that are developed with three main pillars namely conservation, education and local economic development.
“It Includes an effort to ensure the involvement of tourist villages around the geoparks so they can contribute to the development of geopark-based tourism and creative economy,” Sandiaga said.
According to UNESCO’s previous official statement, there are 18 new geopark sites involved in the UGG network, including four sites in Indonesia.
With the designation, there are 195 geopark sites in the UGG network across 48 countries.
Reporting by Indonesia Window