Alcohol could be banned in one of our top tourist destinations… 154



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Thousands of Australians visit the island paradise every year – it’s a beach holiday destination not far from here, it is extremely cheap and there’s plentiful booze. That could all be set to change if new laws come to pass in Indonesia.

Under a new bill in Indonesia, which is currently being discussed among major parties, the consumption of alcoholic beverages could lead to imprisonment. The bill seeks to ban the sale, production, distribution and consumption of all beverages containing more than 1 per cent of alcohol, according to the Jakarta Post.


While it’s not yet clear how much support there is for the bill in parliament, Indonesians are deeply religious – only 2.2 per cent of Indonesians over the age of 20 have consumed alcohol in the last years. Therefore this means the new bills would target tourists – which is the island province of Bali’s main industry.

And business is still booming Bali – despite the plans to execute Myuran Sukumaran and Andrew Chan, the amount of Australians visiting the popular holiday spot has risen by 16.7 per cent, reports the ABC.

The new bill to prohibit alcohol consumption could be backed by President Joko Widodo by the end of the year, says Indonesia Institute president Ross Taylor.

Mr Taylor said mini marts would be the initial focus of the alcohol ban, which would be broadened but not apply to certain locations to protect tourism, such as five-star hotels.

“My own view would be that common sense would prevail … but I’d be cautious in saying that because there are some of the more pronounced religious groups throughout Indonesia really gaining momentum now,” Mr Taylor told AAP.


So tell us today: have you visited Bali? Would you stop travelling there if alcohol was banned? Or is it more about the surroundings than the booze?

Starts at 60 Writers

The Starts at 60 writers team seek out interesting topics and write them especially for you.

  1. Never been, unlikely to go. Alcohol , or lack thereof, would make zero difference. I hope that wouldn’t mean more ethanol being brewed in buckets and poisoning unsuspecting customers.

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  2. I went to Bali years ago when in my twenties. It is a young persons place. It was beautiful, and the island itself still is to some extent. But I would never go back now- it has been changed too much by westerners and unfortunately also issues like the bombings and the recent drug problems.
    Even before I went, I was warned about being set up with drugs and to be careful. I know that can happen anywhere but it does seem more prolific there. If Indonesia takes this stand with alcohol too, it could change it more- not that that’s a bad thing either.

  3. No wouldnt make me change my mind about going as it is one of the last places on Earth that i would ever be interested in visiting..

  4. This President is a nut case, don’t know where he thinks their money will come from. Trouble is New Political Parties are all Islamic, not Muslim . Sharia law is coming . The poor Balinese people rely on Tourism and it wouldn’t worry me as I don’t drink. I have been going since 1981 ,at least once a year. We usually meet up with people we met years ago, and most of them at our hotel are 60 & over. It is the most beautiful place for a holiday, Plus my many Balinese friends .

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    • We stay way down in south Kuta , after dark the street is almost deserted . Went down to Legian for first time in years to a drag show & dinner, nearly died at the people & cars, never again

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