Indonesia’s Minister of Tourism, Sandiaga Uno, stated that they are fast-tracking the process of launching the visa. He mentioned that visa is in the final stage and he is looking forward to turning Bali into a “workcation” destination.
Lots has been said lately about a 5-year digital nomad visa for Indonesia and Bali tourists that would help them to work, enjoy, and live “tax-free” in the islands.
However, Anggiat Napitupulu, the head of the Bali office of the Ministry of Law and Human Rights, toldCoconuts Bali yesterday that the digital nomad visa proposal had come as a surprise to them.
“As far as we know, we have received no information on discussions about the visa at the central government [level],” Anggiat emphasized that regional offices are only responsible for implementing the central administration’s visa policies.
It is likely that the officer was not aware of recent events or that the implementation of the new visa is still in its infancy – at best.
The new visa for “digital nomads” was proposed to encourage visitors to stay longer on the islands.
According to Tourism Minister Sandiaga Uno, spiritual retreats, ecotourism, and a five-year “special visa” will be important in luring 3.6 million overseas visitors back to the region.
He also stated that successful applicants would not have to pay taxes if they do not earn their income in Indonesia.
“In the past, the three S was: sun, sea, and sand. We’re moving it to serenity, spirituality and sustainability. This way we’re getting better quality and better impact to the local economy,” Uno told the South China Morning Post.
The minister reignited the debate on the digital nomad visa after reports that many people have come to Indonesia, especially Bali, to work, using other permits such as the tourist visa.
Anggiat acknowledged that it is currently difficult for authorities to monitor foreigners who come to Bali for remote work.
“They enter Indonesia using visas as permits to stay in Indonesia, but their activities are not in line with the purpose of stay as outlined in the visas issued,” he said.
In addition, Anggiat stated that authorities need to conduct further research to determine the advantages and disadvantages of the proposed visa for digital nomads.
This suggests that implementation may be even further away than recent reports have suggested.