Bali vaccine vacation to give visitors from around the world a beach and a jab

JAKARTA – The resort island of Bali will begin offering coronavirus vaccines to all visitors in an attempt to boost tourist traffic, the Indonesian government said on Monday.

No start date for the program has been given, Tourism Minister Sandiaga Uno said the initiative is still awaiting final approval from President Joko Widodo.

The immunization program will take a two-pronged approach. Domestic travelers will have free access to photos taken by Chinese company Sinovac Biotech and British company AstraZeneca as part of a national program launched in January.

Tourists coming from abroad will be able to receive vaccines manufactured by the Chinese company Sinopharm, among others, which will probably be chargeable. The Sinopharm vaccine is being used in Indonesia as part of a voluntary private sector inoculation program.

With vaccine tourism taking off in places like New York City, Bali will be offering vacation packages that include vaccinations.

Tourism on the island has plunged due to the pandemic. Because the Indonesian government has positioned the tourism industry as a pole of economic growth, Bali is expected to reopen its doors to foreign tourists in late July at the earliest.

The plan to restart the reception of tourists is based on the anticipated spread of vaccinations around the world. However, the number of new infections in Indonesia continues to exceed daily records, darkening the outlook.

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