Tuesday saw a welcome announcement for anyone who has ever dreamed of living long-term in Bali or other idyllic Indonesian destinations such as Java and Lombok. Indonesian officials unveiled a new visa program aimed at bringing more foreign tourists to the country. The new visa will allow foreigners to stay in the country for a length of five or ten years and will come into effect in late December 2022.
However, before you put your house on the market and pack your bags, there is one requirement that visa applicants must meet that could disqualify many who hope to relocate to the famous Island nation.
Along with a standard online application form, visa applicants must submit a copy of their passport with a minimum of 36 months remaining before it expires, a color photograph, a copy of their CV, and a copy of bank records showing proof of a minimum two billion rupiahs, the current equivalent of $128,554 USD. Once the policy comes into effect in December, the visa application can be completed online at visa-online.imigrasi.go.id.
In a press release on Tuesday, Indonesia’s Acting Director General of Immigration, Widodo Ekatjahjana, said of the new visa, “The goal is to attract foreign tourists to come to Bali and diverse other destinations.” He also stated that “this immigration policy is one of the non-fiscal incentives that can be a stimulus for certain foreigners to stay and contribute positively to the Indonesian economy amidst increasingly dynamic global economic conditions.”
Dubbed the “Second Home Visa,” this new program is an attempt to boost the economy by encouraging foreign investment and development. According to The Bali Sun, the program is targeted toward top earners, retirees, and highly skilled digital nomads who want to live long-term in Indonesia.
While visa applicants must meet this steep financial requirement and prove they have significant funds in their bank accounts, it is not explicitly laid out that they must spend that much or purchase a second home. They are also not restricted to living in Bali – the visa is valid anywhere in Indonesia.
Don’t have $128,000 laying around in your bank account? You’ve got another option if you are looking to spend time in Indonesia beyond a short vacation. Last month, Indonesia’s Minister of Tourism and Creative Economy, Sandiaga Uno, announced a six-month visa targeted toward digital nomads.
This “Socio-Cultural” visa also has a financial requirement, although it is much less than the new Second Home Visa. The Socio-Cultural visa requires travelers to show proof of at least $2000 in their bank accounts, as well as a passport that is valid for at least twelve months, a return ticket back to their home country or another destination, passport photos, and an application fee ranging between $100 and $400 depending on the length of the visa.
Both the Socio-Cultural and Second Home Visas are welcome news to foreigners looking to spend more time in Indonesia, but there are concerns from locals that the influx of outsiders could have a negative impact on their communities. A rise in temporary and long-term visitors will likely cause rental prices to rise and can affect other elements of the Indonesian economy and society.
While some areas already impacted by international visitors, like Bali, Jakarta, and Lombok, might be able to more easily absorb an increase in foreigners, smaller, lesser-developed areas are likely to feel the impact more strongly.
Officials, however, have been quick to address these concerns, focusing instead on the positive impact they hope the additional investments will bring to the nation. Acting Director Ekatjahjana explained how the new second home visa is “one of the non-fiscal incentives that can be a stimulus for certain foreigners to stay and contribute positively to the Indonesian economy amidst increasingly dynamic global economic conditions.”
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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com