Indonesia Aims for a $6 Billion Wellness Tourism Boom with Sanur SEZ

Foreign Tourists in Bali

The Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy (Kemenparekraf) is setting its sights on a revenue target of approximately US$5 billion to US$6 billion, which translates to around Rp95 trillion, deriving from the flourishing sector of health and wellness-based tourism, colloquially known as wellness tourism.

Minister of Tourism and Creative Economy, Sandiaga Uno, divulged that this ambitious target finds its support in various initiatives, notably the Special Economic Zone (SEZ) located in the heart of Sanur, Denpasar, Bali.

Speaking at a weekly press conference on Monday, October 30, 2023, Sandiaga Uno articulated the government’s vision, saying, “We aim to encourage a culture of health and fitness right here in Indonesia. Our primary goal is to harness the immense potential in our country to generate US$5 billion to US$6 billion in revenue from health and wellness-based tourism.”

The impending inauguration of the Sanur SEZ is set to occur with a soft launch by the end of 2023, followed by full-scale operations in 2024. This marks a significant milestone as it becomes the pioneering SEZ in Indonesia with an exclusive focus on health and wellness, an industry with vast untapped potential.

Sandiaga Uno further shed light on the staggering amount of money spent by Indonesian citizens seeking medical treatment abroad. A remarkable US$11 billion, equivalent to Rp174 trillion, flows out of the country annually for these purposes. In addition to this, it is estimated that between 600,000 and 2 million Indonesian nationals embark on overseas journeys specifically for health tourism.

With the imminent establishment of the Sanur SEZ, Indonesians will now have access to top-tier healthcare services within the country, eliminating the need for costly and often lengthy medical trips abroad.

But the impact of the Sanur SEZ extends beyond its contribution to the nation’s health and wellness sector. As it encompasses a sprawling area of 41.26 hectares, it is anticipated to usher in a surge of employment opportunities. Approximately 60,000 to 80,000 new, high-quality jobs are poised to be created, providing a welcome boost to the local and national economy.

This visionary SEZ represents more than just a breakthrough in healthcare tourism; it is a testament to Indonesia’s dedication to fostering an environment of well-being and rejuvenation. This unique SEZ is thoughtfully designed to embrace the natural beauty and coastal charm of Sanur and Segara Ayu, two of Bali’s renowned beaches. It’s not merely a healthcare facility; it’s an integrated tourism hub that harmonizes the allure of nature with world-class medical services.

In addition to its health-focused facilities, the Sanur SEZ also hosts a diverse array of amenities, including luxurious hotels, state-of-the-art MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, Exhibitions) facilities, an Ethnomedicinal Botanic Garden, a Commercial Center, spacious convention halls, and a bustling wellness market retail area. This comprehensive infrastructure is designed to support a broad spectrum of industries within the zone and cater to the needs of diverse clientele.

In the ever-evolving landscape of wellness tourism, the Sanur SEZ represents Indonesia’s commitment to providing holistic health experiences and fostering the growth of an industry that is increasingly sought after by travelers worldwide. With its blend of healthcare excellence and natural beauty, the Sanur SEZ promises to be a beacon of health and vitality, not only for Indonesia but for international visitors seeking wellness and rejuvenation in a tropical paradise.