Bali's reopening to international tourists could not happen at any time when coronavirus cases have emerged so much that crematoriums are unable to keep up with the deaths on the island.
On 31 July, Paradise Island reopened to domestic visitors in an effort to reintroduce its once thriving and lucrative tourism industry and saw an increase in COVID-19 incidents.
Although there is no official link between the re-opening of tourism and the surge of cases, plans for re-opening in September have been overturned, and Bali Governor Wayan Koster has recently announced that Indonesia will not be reopening its borders until at least the end of 2020.
Bali ranked second as the most popular destination that tourists would like to visit after the pandemic. Koster said that the re-opening of Bali to foreign tourists requires intense caution and thorough planning as one of the key tourist destinations in the world. If the attempt to restore tourism has failed, it may have a negative effect on the reputation of Indonesia and may have counter-productive implications for the recovery of tourism.
Meanwhile, the absence of tourists flocking Kuta beach and temples takes a toll on local businesses.
An epidemiologist suggested that Bali may have to go back into lockdown if the locals do not know how to control the virus.
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