Amid debate over the temporary closure of the Komodo National Park in East Nusa Tenggara, the Environment and Forestry Ministry (KLHK) plans to set a designated team to eliminate the negative impacts of tourism while preserving the protected, kompas.com reported.
The plan has reportedly been approved by the Natural Resource and Ecosystem Conservation (KSDAE) Directorate General, East Nusa Tenggara provincial administration and West Manggarai regency administration at a coordination meeting held in Jakarta on Wednesday.
Upon its establishment, the team is expected to conduct studies and make future predictions on how to manage the Komodo National Park as an exclusive area. The meeting also resulted in an agreement on the organization of boat entrances and ticket sales for the park at one point of entrance, namely the Labuan Bajo Port.
While Labuan Bajo is part of the Komodo National Park, people have been caught trying to sneak into the park through unofficial entrance points without paying an entrance fee.
The declaration of Labuan Bajo as the sole entrance to the park is expected to improve control over those who are visiting the area.
Supervision and control would also be improved over other tourist activities, such as Komodo-watching, snorkeling, diving and many others.
Read also: Komodo park temporary closure ‘irrelevant’, says tourism minister
According to a press release received by KompasTravel on Wednesday, KSDAE Director General Wiratno his team would also evaluate the entrance fee to the area, which would be done in coordination with the Finance Ministry, Tourism Ministry, Association of Indonesian Tour and Travel Agencies (ASITA) and tour operators.
The evaluation will also cover a management system for visitors, an information center and opportunities for collaborations to improve management and licensing for services and facilities in natural attractions. (mut)