Sandiaga Uno, Travel bubble will be implemented in Mandalika MotoGP

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Sandiaga Uno
Sandiaga Uno. Photo: M. ADE NOVERYZA/IO

IO – The Mandalika MotoGP will still take place in March 2022 amidst the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic. This was confirmed by the Minister of Tourism and Creative Economy/Head of the Tourism and Creative Economy Agency Sandiaga Uno.

“In the middle of Omicron I want to convey that the show must go on. We are preparing and implementing a travel bubble with full vigilance and caution towards racers, crew, officials, including officers involved in MotoGP,” he said at an online Weekly Press Briefing, Jakarta, Monday, 24 January.

“Alhamdulillah, NTB as the host is also ready. The achievement of vaccine dose 1 reached 100 percent and dose 2 was above 70 percent. Hopefully this can reduce the potential for the spread of new variants, including Omicron,” he said.

The travel bubble concept that will be applied to crews, officials, racers, and committees involved in MotoGP is more or less the same as the travel bubble that is being piloted for Singaporean tourists to Indonesia. They will perform a PCR-test before departure and upon arrival. They are also only allowed to do activities in the Mandalika bubble.

Meanwhile, the spectators will not be subject to a travel bubble because Sandiaga predicts that as many as 90 percent of those who come will be domestic tourists. “Later on, they will technically continue to use the circular issued that they carry out their activities with strict and disciplined health protocols. So for the spectators, they are free to travel around NTB. However, this does not apply to the racers, crew, technicians and committees who are subject to travel bubble protocol”.

The quarantine scheme will be adapted to the current pandemic situation. But he hopes that with around 100,000 people showing up, with data coming soon from the organizers, the government can determine what kind of travel bubble and priority handling of the pandemic is appropriate, so that MotoGP does not become a trigger for COVID-19 cases. Previously, implementation of the travel bubble trial between Singapore and Indonesia, especially in the Batam and Bintan areas, began on Monday, 24 January. This is one of the strategic steps intended to revive the national economy and tourism. The trial scheme will be carried out in stages, followed by monitoring, controlling, and evaluating the implementation of the travel bubble, in order to suppress any increase in COVID-19 transmission. “January 24, 2022 was the first day the travel bubble between Indonesia and Singapore was tested. The plan to open the Riau Islands for Singaporean foreign tourists through the travel bubble scheme has been approved by President Joko Widodo, as a prototype to start the opening of the economy, especially tourism, in a controlled and limited, sustainable and gradual manner,” he said.

The travel bubble scheme in the Batam, Bintan and Singapore areas is listed in the Circular of the COVID-19 Handling Task Force Number 3 of 2022. This circular regulates foreign travelers, in this case tourists, to carry out their activities, making a reservation in advance at one of the accommodation providers in the Lagoi and Nongsa areas; they may only operate within these two areas. Regarding the PCR test, it must be carried out a maximum of 3×24 hours before departure. (rp)