The Indonesian Minister of Tourism and Creative Economy, Mrs. Mari Elka Pangestu has accepted an invitation to be a special VIP guest speaker at the 2012 Asia Pacific Golf Summit slated to be held in the oil-rich sultanate of Brunei Darussalam on December 11-13.
"We are very pleased to have a person of Mrs. Pangestu's standing to address the Summit this year and coming from the largest economy in Southeast Asia, is a clear indication as to the importance that Indonesia is attaches to the golf industry," said Mike Sebastian, chief executive officer of the Asia Pacific Golf Group, the owner and producer of the Summit.
Mrs. Pangestu will deliver her address on the opening day of the Summit which will be on December 11. "It is really an honour for us to be able to play host to not only one of Indonesia's most senior ministers but also a leader who is recognised throughout the region for her ability to lead and deliver results," pointed out Sebastian.
More than 60 world-class speakers and panellists have already been confirmed to take part in APGS 2012.
For more details, visit the Summit's web site at:
INDONESIA GETS FOCUSED ON GOLF TOURISM
If there is one country in Asia that is awakening to the game of golf and the role that it can play in promoting tourism, it has got to be the Republic of Indonesia. It has been a nation that has been flying below the international golf radar for quite a while but all of a sudden, golf has shot into the forefront of tourism promotion.
It's the big buzz word amongst stake-holders of the game in the country and the importance of golf tourism has taken a whole new meaning. It is regarded as of the "pillars of tourism" and the programme to drive Indonesia up the ladder of great golf destinations is being spearheaded by the Indonesian Minister of Tourism and Creative Economy, Mrs. Mari Elka Pangestu.
Mrs. Pangestu takes over this challenging portfolio after having has a very successful stint as the nation's Minister of Trade. In appointing her, Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono said, "I trust Mari Pangestu to lead the ministry and I want, in the next three years, to develop tourism and the creative economy."
Being the target-driven person that she is, Mrs. Pangestu has taken the bull by the horns and is determined to deliver the results that are expected of her. "I have drawn up a three-year master plan to develop a road map that will help us develop and grow golf tourism in the country," she emphasised.
In a discussion with the Asia Pacific Golf Group, the new tourism supremo of tourism declared, "From a base of some 20,000 golf tourists who come to Indonesia, my aim is to grow this number ten times over in the next three years". A truly bold statement that is just not political rhetoric. This is a lady who is realistic and who understands the challenges that she has to work against to achieve her goal. She has the vision and the intellect to get the job done - after all, before she ascended to a ministerial post, she was the executive director at the Jakarta-based Centre for Strategic and International Studies.
"We have all of the essential ingredients for success already in place," she explained. "We have some 162 golf courses in the country and most of our courses are really wonderful - a visitor can play golf in a myriad of settings - by spectacular volcanoes, by stunning oceans capes and spell-binding rainforests".
"Combined with our rich culture, the warmth of the Indonesian people and the delectable variety of exotic food, Indonesia is a veritable showcase for golf," Mrs. Pangestu pointed out. To make her point, she singled out the Jagorawi Toll road, a 59-kilometre stretch of highway that is dotted with 17 world-class golf courses. "We else in Asia can one a lay-out like this!" After having taken her advice and driven through this thoroughfare, one must admit that Jagorawi is indeed a "highway to golfing heaven".
A keen golfer herself, Mrs. Pangestu has adopted a highly holistic plan that will involve a number of regions within the sprawling archipelago of 17508 islands to develop golf tourism. "We have Jakarta, Bali and the islands of Batam and Bintan in the Rhio archipelago and we plan to improve all of the supporting infrastructure around these destinations and to transform these centres into golfing havens," the Minister said.
Given her focus, drive and determination, there is absolutely nothing that can come in the way of Mrs. Pangestu as she pushes ahead to transform the Indonesian Republic into one of Asia's top golf tourism destinations.