TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - The Indonesian Ministry of Foreign Affairs will officially suspend visas on arrival as of Friday, March 20, to cut down the number of foreign visitors as one of many attempts to prevent the farther spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) in Indonesia, which has claimed 25 lives and infected 309 people. The ministry said that the policy will be effective for one whole month.
Foreign Affairs Ministry’s acting-spokesman Teuku Faizasyah on Thursday, March 19, said that the decision is based on a lengthy internal deliberation. He also assured that the foreign affairs ministry’s representatives offices aborad are prepared to adhere to this new policy.
“We have communicated this move with everyone involved,” said Faizasyah.
However, the spokesman asserted that the decision does not entirely close-off the access for foreign visitors into Indonesia and is rather retreating back to stricter ways of filing for a travel visa, where foreign nationals must complete a set of documents prior to obtaining it.
The ministry’s move follows other countries that have been affected by the coronavirus. Indonesia also continues to implement a ban on visitors who have traveled to China, South Korea, Vatican, Germany, Italy, Britain, and Iran in the past 14-days.