When stepping into Indonesia, every globetrotter finds it to be a treasure-trove of islands. A nation adorned with natural wonders, each island tells a tale of its own. Especially the historical attractions along with spectacular beaches hold surprises for winter wanderlusts. Unveiling the budget-friendly gems, this list meanders through Indonesia's winter retreats. These are the most affordable tourist spots in the Indonesian archipelago. 10 Best Budget-Friendly Indonesian Destinations to Visit in Winter Gili Islands A trio of small islands off the coast of Lombok, Indonesia, the Gili Islands are famed for their lush vegetation and world-class diving and snorkeling spots. The underwater world surrounding these islands is a mesmerizing sight, easily accessible from any point along the shoreline. For those considering a journey from Dhaka to Lombok by air, the most economical per-head deal is USD 334 in parity with BDT 36,689.97, with the exchange rate at USD 1 = BDT 109.85. Accommodation costs per person are generally IDR 146,755 or BDT 1,027.21 (IDR 1 = BDT 0.007), and a day's worth of meals can be budgeted at IDR 49,993 which is equivalent to BDT 349.93. Read more: Best Asian Alternatives to the Maldives: Affordable Island Getaways Ubud Located in the uplands of Bali, Ubud offers a central hub of attractions. The Royal Palace, situated in the heart of town, is free for visitors, and just down the road lies the Sacred Monkey Forest, a popular destination. A bemo ride takes travelers to the famous Goa Gajah, an elephant cave in Bedulu village, now a UNESCO World Heritage Site renowned for intricate carvings. Accommodation costs in Ubud typically IDR 2,142,151 in proportion to BDT 14,993.94, with budget options such as Agung Trisna Bungalows and Inang Villa. The daily charge for food in Ubud is approximately IDR 189,959 equaling BDT 1329.61. The most cost-effective airfare from Dhaka to Ngurah Rai Airport is USD 252 in parity with BDT 27,682.25. Read more: Shopping in Malaysia: What to Buy, Where to Buy from
In recent years, several earthquakes have devastated different parts of the globe. Earthquakes are caused by sudden movement along tectonic plates within the surface of earth. These movements release energy in the form of seismic waves that cause the earth's surface to shake. These geological events disrupt lives and economies, standing as stark reminders of the need for earthquake preparedness. Let's take a look at the top earthquake-prone countries across the world and understand their vulnerabilities. The World's 10 Most Earthquake-prone Countries Japan Japan occupies a precarious position in the Pacific Ring of Fire, an arc characterized by fault lines and volcanic activity in the Pacific Ocean basin. This is the convergence of four tectonic plates: the Pacific, Philippine, Okhotsk, and Eurasian. The primary reason behind Japan's seismic vulnerability is the collision and subduction of these tectonic slabs. The Pacific Plate is subducting beneath the North American Plate, creating deep ocean trenches and mountain ranges. Read more Earthquake Safety Tips for Parents to Keep Children Safe The 2011 Tohoku earthquake, with a magnitude of 9.1, triggered a devastating tsunami, claiming around 19,759 lives. The 2016 Kumamoto earthquake, measuring magnitude 7, caused about 273 fatalities.
Bangladesh, Indonesia keen to work together in energy, agriculture, health sectors in line with signed bilateral agreements
Bangladesh and Indonesia are keen to work jointly in energy, agriculture and health sectors in line with the signed bilateral agreements between the friendly countries. Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen briefed reporters after meeting between Bangladesh President Mohammed Shahabuddin and his Indonesian counterpart Joko Widodo. The bilateral meeting between the Bangladesh President and his Indonesian counterpart was held on the sidelines of the 43rd summit of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and 18th ‘East Asia summit’ at Kakatua Room of Jakarta Convention Center (JCC). Noting that both the countries earlier signed three MoUs (memorandum of understanding) on energy and health sectors, it was acknowledged there is an ample opportunity to ensure joint work for the benefit of the two peoples. IORA Secretary General pays courtesy call on President Shahabuddin in Jakarta The Bangladesh President expressed his heartiest thanks to his Indonesian counterpart for inviting him as well as the excellent hospitality extended to the Bangladesh delegation during the visit. Referring to the tremendous development in Bangladesh’s different socio-economic and health sectors, the Indonesian President highly appreciated the country’s development in health sector, specially in the ‘Community Clinic’ concept designed by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina that gained worldwide appreciation. The Bangladesh President told his Indonesian counterpart to import international-standard pharmaceutical products, ceramic and readymade garments from Bangladesh, inviting the Indonesian investors to invest here as an investment-friendly atmosphere is prevailing in the country over the last decade. Concerted efforts needed for transition to circularity: BGMEA President “An initiative is still going on to ensure a mutual decision to recognize the certificate of the physicians of the two countries for the betterment of the two countries,” Dr Momen quoted the President as saying during the bilateral talks. Noting that Bangladesh is setting up as many as 51 Special Economic Zones (SEZs) all over the country as well as 39 Hi-Tech Parks and other specialized Economic Zones, the President said, “If Indonesia is interested, Bangladesh would be happy to designate an Indonesia-specific Economic Zone for them.” As Bangladesh aspires to transform itself into a manufacturing hub being located at the junction of South Asia and South East Asia with a goal for becoming a trillion-dollar economy by the end of this decade, the President stressed on larger collaboration between the two countries’ private sectors to avail opportunities of investment. President Shahabuddin joins ASEAN summit opening ceremony in Jakarta President Shahabuddin hoped that direct air connectivity between Dhaka and Jakarta or Bali would be established soon, creating an opportunity to establish coastal shipping among sea ports of the two states. On the Rohingya issues, the President sought all-out support of the Indonesian government and its people to end the crisis as saying, “Bangladesh has sheltered displaced Myanmar citizens due to humanitarian grounds.” The Indonesian President said the Rohingya repatriation issue has been broadly discussed in the ASEAN meetings and also assured of providing necessary assistances in this regard. President Shahabuddin sought further cooperation of the ASEAN chair and others concerned to ensure the membership of ASEAN Sectoral Dialogue Partner. Expressing satisfaction over the existing growing bilateral relations between Bangladesh and Indonesia, Shahabuddin said Bangladesh highly values its relations with Indonesia, as being one of the first Muslim countries to recognize Bangladesh during the lifetime of Bangladesh’s Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
Secretary General of Indian Ocean Rim Association Dr. Salman Al Farisi on Wednesday paid a courtesy call on President Mohammed Shahabuddin. The meeting was held at Jakarta Convention Centre (JCC) in Indonesia. During the meeting, the secretary general apprised the President of the activities of IORA, press secretary Joynal Abedin told UNB. Bangladesh seeks pharmaceutical products, raw materials export to Indonesia Lauding the initiative taken by Bangladesh for the development of IORA, he also briefed the President on the organization’s future plans. He said they are planning to help landlock countries too. Mentioning the recent development of Bangladesh as a milestone, President Shahabuddin said that many countries are now inspired by Bangladesh. President Shahabuddin in Indonesia to attend ASEAN Summit, East Asia Summit He assured that Bangladesh will play a big role to the development of IORA. Foreign Affairs Minister AK Abdul Momen, Secretary (Maritime Affairs Unit) at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Rear Admiral (rtd) Md Khurshed Alam and secretaries concerned to the President were also present during the meeting. US, Indonesia and 5 other nations hold war drills amid China concerns The Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) is a dynamic inter-governmental organisation aimed at strengthening regional cooperation and sustainable development within the Indian Ocean region through its 23 Member States and 11 Dialogue Partners.
The 43rd Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Summit and related summits kicked off in Indonesia's Jakarta on Tuesday (September 05, 2023), with the focus on establishing the region as an epicenter of economic growth. Addressing the opening ceremony, Indonesian President Joko Widodo, whose country is holding the rotating ASEAN chair this year, urged ASEAN to stay united and not be a proxy to any power. "Don't make our ship, ASEAN, become an arena of rivalry that causes damages to each other. Make our ship the foundation to build cooperation and create prosperity, stability and peace, not only for the region but also for the world," he said. During the next three days, leaders of ASEAN member nations are expected to discuss issues that would chart the future of ASEAN as a community and an institution. Read: President Shahabuddin in Indonesia to attend ASEAN Summit, East Asia Summit This includes steps to speed up the decision-making in crises and emergencies, as well as steps to bolster ASEAN's capacity to respond to emerging challenges in the region. The summit under Indonesia's ASEAN chairmanship this year is themed "ASEAN Matters: Epicentrum of Growth." In the past decade, ASEAN's average annual growth reached 3.98 percent, above the global economic growth of 2.6 percent, showed ASEAN data. Founded in 1967, ASEAN groups Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam. Read: Southeast Asian leaders are besieged by thorny issues as they hold an ASEAN summit without Biden
An advertising agency in the Philippines has apologised for using visuals of tourist attractions in other countries in a promotional film. Visuals from the ad included rice terraces in Indonesia, sand dunes in the United Arab Emirates, and a plane landing in Switzerland, reports BBC. The ad agency, DDB Philippines, apologised for the "unfortunate oversight," it said. Also read: Bangladesh’s first tourism master plan yet to be formulated, was supposed to be completed last Dec Christina Garcia Frasco, Philippines' tourism secretary, stated that public money was not utilised for the film. According to Frasco, the Department of Tourism frequently sought confirmation from the agency that the elements used in the ad were their own and unique, said the report. "ALL these occasions, DDB repeatedly assured the DOT that the originality and ownership of all materials are in order," she said. Also read: Master plan for tourism in Bangladesh to be formulated in Dec: State Minister It was created as part of the "Love the Philippines" campaign, which was launched in late June at a cost of $900,000, the BBC report added. Analysis by French news agency AFP and Philippine blogger Sass Rogando Sasot first revealed the use of visuals from other nations in the ad. Frasco stated that the department will ensure DDB Philippines accepts responsibility for the video. Also read: “We very much value and welcome tourists from Bangladesh” In its own response, DDB Philippines stated that the usage of stock material in mood films is common in the advertising industry, but it apologised for using other videos in this case, the report also said. “The use of foreign stock footage in a campaign promoting the Philippines is highly inappropriate, and contradictory to the DOT's objectives,” it said. The video has been withdrawn, and the company has stated that it would cooperate with the Philippines tourism department's inquiry. Read more: These are the top 25 hotels in Asia, according to Tripadvisor
Dhaka's air quality continued to be in the 'unhealthy' zone on Wednesday (May 31, 2023) morning. With an air quality index (AQI) score of 166 at 8:41 am on Wednesday, Dhaka ranked second in the list of cities worldwide with the worst air quality. An AQI between 151 and 200 is considered ‘unhealthy'. Indonesia’s Jakarta and Chile’s Santiago occupied the first and third spots in the list, with AQI scores of 173 and 157, respectively. Also read: Dhaka’s air quality ‘unhealthy’ Friday morning An AQI between 201 and 300 is said to be 'very unhealthy', while a reading of 301 to 400 is considered 'hazardous', posing serious health risks to residents. In Bangladesh, the AQI is based on five criteria pollutants -- Particulate Matter (PM10 and PM2.5), NO2, CO, SO2 and Ozone. Dhaka has long been grappling with air pollution issues. As per the World Health Organization (WHO), air pollution kills an estimated seven million people worldwide every year, largely as a result of increased mortality from stroke, heart disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, lung cancer and acute respiratory infections. Read more: UN talks on a treaty to end global plastic pollution open in Paris
Recently, Indonesian football has been in the headlines for various negative reasons. Now it seems they got an opportunity to get out of those negative vibes. World champions Argentina will visit Indonesia to play friendly matches. Argentina will tour Asia in June and will play two friendly matches on this tour. It was already known that the world champions will face Australia in China next month. According to Reuters, Lionel Scaloni’s team will also travel to Indonesia. Argentina vs Indonesia Friendly Match Schedule Argentina will play a friendly match with Australia on June 15 in Beijing, China. After that, Lionel Messi’s team will catch the plane to Indonesia. The date of the friendly match between Argentina and Indonesia has not been finalized yet. However, the Argentina Football Association announced June 19 as a possible date. Can This Friendly Match Help to Improve Indonesia’s Soccer Setbacks? Currently, Argentina is hosting the FIFA U20 World Cup, which was supposed to take place in Indonesia. Argentina was chosen as the new host after mass protests in Indonesia. This World Cup will end on June 11, which started on May 20. Read more: BAN vs AFG Series 2023: Fixtures, Schedules, Teams, Head-to-Head Records The main issue in Indonesia was about hosting Israel. Israel is one of the participants in the U20 World Cup. During the draw of the tournament, it was seen that several Indonesian states were not willing to host Israel’s matches. As soon as this problem came to the front, the international organization of football, FIFA, canceled Indonesia from the status of the World Cup host. Apart from this issue, there were 135 deaths from unintentional causes of domestic football in Indonesia. This loss of life occurred in the riots and stampede after the match between Arema FC and Persebaya Surabaya Club in Liga One. The mishap occurred in October 2022, in the Malang region of the country’s East Java. Eight months after the accident that shook the football world, Argentina is going to play a friendly match in the country. So, this match is expected to improve Indonesia’s condition regarding football. Football is a very popular sport in Indonesia. But the country has not been able to make an impression on the global football arena. They participated in the 1938 World Cup while under Dutch rule, and that was their last foot on the world stage. More recently, however, Indonesian football fans have had a great occasion to celebrate. Last week, they won gold at the Southeast Asian Games for the first time since 1991. Read more: Asia Cup Cricket 2023: Analysis of Group A The arrival of Argentina is generating immense excitement throughout the country, and it is a source of great joy. Erick Thohir, the chief of the Indonesian Football Association, views this visit as a chance to bring about a positive change. Argentina and Indonesia last met at the World Youth Championship. In 1979, the legendary Diego Maradona played for Argentina in Japan. Indonesia lost that match 5-0. Final Words It is not sure yet if Messi will participate in the friendly match between Argentina in Indonesia in June 2023. But it is believed that Argentina will visit with its full strength. Indonesia is ranked 149 in the FIFA rankings. Time will tell if Argentina will tour Asia with the World Cup-winning team. However, Asian Argentine fans have been waiting for the arrival of the world champions. Read more: Asia Cup Cricket 2023: Analysis of Group B.
Indonesian authorities on Wednesday arrested the information technology minister as part of an investigation into a million-dollar corruption scandal linked to the construction of mobile phone transmission towers in remote regions. Communication and Information Technology Minister Johnny G. Plate was arrested after showing up for questioning at the Attorney General’s Office, said Kuntadi, the director of investigation at the prosecutor's office. If he is formally charged, it may further tarnish President Joko Widodo’s credibility when it comes to fighting corruption. Four other members of Widodo’s Cabinet have been sentenced to prison terms in corruption cases, casting a shadow over his efforts to clean up government while he looks for a successor when his term ends in 2024. Footage showed Plate leaving the prosecutor's office in handcuffs and wearing a detainee red vest. He did not respond to journalists' questions. This was the third time Plate was summoned since mid-February by investigators digging deep into his supervisory role in allocation of state funds for the construction of base transceiver stations, said Kuntadi, who goes by a single name like many Indonesians. The project was initiated at the end of 2020 to handle more than 7,900 blank spots in mobile coverage in Indonesia’s outermost, underdeveloped and remote areas of Papua, Sulawesi, Borneo, Sumatra and East Nusatenggara. It's due to be completed this year, and so far, 4,200 locations have received the equipment, the ministry’s data showed. The corruption case is believed to have cost the state 8 trillion rupiah ($539 million), said Muhammad Yusuf Ateh, head of the development finance control at the prosecutor's office. He said the losses included fictitious payments for the base stations that have not been built. Plate was apprehended along with five other suspects, including three from the private sector, after some 60 people were questioned about the procurement process. His arrest also sparked speculation over the fate of his Nasdem party, which is part of the government coalition with seven others. Nasdem had earlier endorsed a popular opposition politician, Anies Baswedan, as a presidential candidate in 2024. Widodo has referred to the party as an “outsider” in the coalition.
Indonesian officials said Sunday they freed 20 of their nationals who were trafficked to Myanmar as part of a cyber scam, amid an increase in human trafficking cases in Southeast Asia. Indonesia’s Foreign Affairs Ministry said in a statement that its embassy in Yangon with help from local networks had managed to release the victims from Myawaddy township and brought them to the Thai border on Saturday. The Indonesian Embassy in Bangkok will work closely with Thai authorities to repatriate the victims to Indonesia, the statement said. Myawaddy is in eastern Kayin state along the Thai border and is the site of an armed conflict between Myanmar’s military and ethnic Karen rebels. Fake recruiters had offered the Indonesians high-paying jobs in Thailand but instead trafficked them to Myawaddy, about 567 kilometers (352 miles) south of Naypyidaw, the capital, to perform cyber scams for crypto websites or apps, said Judha Nugraha, an official in Indonesia’s Foreign Affairs Ministry. The situation drew a national outcry in Indonesia after a video made by one of the victims went viral on social media last month. It showed dozens of grim-faced Indonesian workers in a dormitory room, asking their government to help them out of “the war zone” where they see violence almost every day. “Please help us back to Indonesia, because our life here is very miserable and threatened,” one person said, describing how they had been transferred from one company to other companies over the past eight months before being stranded in Myawaddy. The victim said they were tortured when they failed to reach certain work targets, receiving beatings, electrocutions and other physical punishments. Authorities said the victims were likely trafficked to Myanmar by illegal means since no records were found of their arrival in Myanmar’s immigration system. The case had prompted Indonesian President Joko Widodo to order the Foreign Affairs Ministry to make an “all out” effort to help rescue the victims, telling a news conference on Thursday: “They have been deceived and taken to an unwanted place by the traffickers." It was unclear how their release was secured, but National Police spokesperson Sandi Nugroho said negotiations were held with the company that employed them. Indonesia’s Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi told a news conference on Friday that the government is also working to help Indonesian victims of online scams in Myanmar, Cambodia, Thailand, Vietnam, Laos and the Philippines. She said the Indonesian Embassy in Manila said Friday that Philippine authorities have rescued more than 1,000 trafficking victims from 10 countries, including 143 Indonesians, who will be repatriated to their countries of origin. “As the chair of ASEAN this year, Indonesia is trying to raise this issue at the 42nd ASEAN Summit,” Marsudi said. ASEAN includes Brunei, Cambodia, Vietnam, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippine, Singapore and Thailand. Indonesia will host the bloc’s leaders’ meeting on May 10-11 in Labuan Bajo on Flores island.