Monday, 16 July, 2012 | 14:10 WIB
Hajj Costs Rise, Jemaah Cover Four Components
TEMPO Interactive, Jakarta:Last week’s Hajj Operation Cost (BPIH) increase for 2012 will impact the payment of only four components including flights, accommodation in Mecca, accommodation in Medina, and the cost of living in Saudi Arabia.
"These four components will be paid directly," the Secretary General of the Ministry of Religious Affairs, Bachrul Hayat, told Tempo on Sunday.
The increase, said Bachrul, occurs almost every year. "Especially due to the increasing costs for flights and accommodation," said Bachrul.
However, to reduce costs, the government is attempting to shift the liability. "Last year there was an obligation to deposit US$100 to the Saudi Arabian government. Benefits of the initial deposit are to be diverted, "he said.
The real increase of the flight component is US$184. "However, because it was already paid earlier, the average increase is only $84," he said.
Meanwhile, determining the cost of living is still based on figures from last year.
This year, Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Hajj has provided Indonesia with a quota of 211,000 thousand; 17,000 of them are special Hajj. Minister of Religion, Suryadharma Ali, Bachrul said, had sent two letters to request a quota increase of 30,000 people.
Bachrul said that around 1.8 million prospective pilgrims had registered this year. "Including the 211,000 people who will depart this year," he said.
AYU PRIMA SANDI