In this issue: ① A World Trudging on ② Industry in the Groove ③ The Loss of Honk Kong ④ Malaysia Abolishes Death Penalty ⑤ Malaysia, Carey Island ⑥ Lotus New Product and Summer Promos ⑦ So Many Good Reasons to Work with LAT ⑧ Borneo Music ⑨ Singapore - Desaru Ferry Service ⑩ Holywings in Bali ⑪ A Revamped LAT website ⑫ Recap of entry Rules
A World Trudging On
The world is currently entangled in a chaos of economic and geopolitical challenges which is destabilising the order built since the fall of the Berlin Wall! We are living a time of pervasive and jittery uneasiness. It is in this context though that we are embarking on a path of business recovery, our industry strongly bouncing back thanks to the pent up demand and household savings brought about by two long years of Covid pandemic travel restrictions.
The travel industry is at present hardly equipped to face the sudden demand while dealing with the challenges of an all-encompassing soaring cost. It is a damning conundrum which constrains the current operational capacity and the capital to invest in much needed resources. The demand is already outpacing the ability of airlines and airports to re-employ staff laid off during the pandemic for example. A lack of workers has led to cancellations as well as long queues in peak travel times. Add in the strikes, and it all makes for a gloomy summer in the departure lounge. Deutsche Lufthansa has cancelled a total of 3,100 flights after a wave of coronavirus infections worsened staffing shortages.
On the geopolitical side this month the Indonesian president Joko Widodo (Jokowi) met his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin in Moscow agreeing in principle on the opening of a sea route for Ukrainian wheat exports. At the same time Russian forces withdrew from Snake Island, a tiny but strategically important chunk of Ukrainian territory in the Black Sea. Russia called the move a “gesture of goodwill” to show that it is not blocking food exports by sea from Ukraine. Apparently, the Russians have been pushed out the island by Ukrainian forces.
Twenty-five years ago in July, Britain returned Hong Kong to China. In 1997 the party promised that Hong Kong would remain free and open for at least 50 years. But at the halfway mark Hong Kong is a police state. That didn’t happen overnight. Hours before the anniversary of the handover in 2020 China imposed a draconian security law. But the party had spent decades laying the foundations for its takeover, using infiltration, coercion, fear and intimidation to bring the city to heel. Now, with both overt and covert strategies working in tandem, 25 years from now the territory will be unrecognisable. This is not only a sad story for the whole world but has direct repercussions on SEA, commencing from a flurry of departures of individuals and businesses from Hong Kong, mostly directed to Singapore.
On a much brighter note we are delighted to hail Malaysia's decision to abolish mandatory death penaltyas a welcome step towards abolition of the capital punishment in the whole region.
At the time of editing this bulletin, the big guys, the important organisations and central banks of the world are meeting to discuss the future of the globe. We hope that sailing through this very busy and bumpy summer travel season we will be able to return to calmer waters with more stable and peaceful prospects.
Malaysia, Carey Island
Orang Asli Community (Aborigines) and Agriculture Sustainability
Carey Island is a large flat island off the west coast of Peninsula Malaysia in the Kuala Langat district of Selangor state. Carey Island was named 100 years ago after a successful British coffee and rubber planter called Valentine Carey.
It is home to one aboriginal community belonging to the Mah Meri, one of 18 Orang Asli tribes living in Malaysia (Orang Asli means original people). This community of around 1,400 people is famous for its unique wooden statues and masks carved from a rare red swamp hardwood called Nyireh Batu which belongs to the mahogany family. There are said to be around 25 craftsmen and they can produce over 100 different designs, each with its own significance and purpose in their culture.
Environmentally friendly practices are being pioneered on the island such as reduced use of herbicides, using barn owls to control the rat population, and planting the fringes of plantations with natural vegetation to allow beneficial insects to thrive. Several endangered trees and plants have been replanted with the results of regenerating mangrove growth along the island's shores.
We offer day tours to Carey Island on private basis starting from USD 140.00 per person. Do enquire with us here.
LAT New Products
Look at the endless innovative touring products developed by LAT. From slow tourism to tours aways from crowds, from an agile system of modular scheduled departures in different languages to arts, architecture, food and education packages, just to name a few!
All our offers are now all strictly carbon neutral, all emissions being calculated and offset by projects in cooperation with Climate Partners.
LAT Super Summer Promos
Review our stream of offers for the summer. Just click here or contact us for enquires.
Borneo Music in Sarawak
In the years before COVID-19 halted tourism in 2020, Malaysia attracted tens of thousands of local and international visitors to a series of arts, music and literary festivals that established the country as one of Southeast Asia's most vibrant creative hubs.
Now after reopening to fully vaccinated travellers on May 1, the country is roaring back with a focus on restoring the earning potential of tourism, art and music. A new series of festivals are coming back bigger and better in response to pent-up demand and frustrated creativity. The first to make a full comeback are musicians, who brought live music fans to fever pitch in June in the eastern Malaysian state of Sarawak, on the island of Borneo.
Nothing brings people back together as festivals do, and they play a pivotal role in connecting folks from all walks of life, like the Rainforest World Music Festival, held in the state capital Kuching from June 17 to 19, and the Borneo Jazz Festival, which ran from June 24 to 26 in Miri, the main coastal town in Sarawak's northeast.
This year also marks the Rainforest World Music Festival's 25th anniversary. For the occasion, the festival creator, Canadian composer, and multi-instrumentalist Randy Raine-Reusch, returned to guide the artistic program, together with two rising stars of Sarawak's contemporary music: female sape player Alena Murang and Bob Meldrick of At Adau, a Kuching-based experimental folk-rock band inspired by the state's tribal history and instruments. The sape is a traditional plucked lute.
Singapore - Desaru Ferry Service
Singapore - Desaru ferry services started operations from July 7, connecting Singapore's Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal with Johor's Desaru Coast Ferry Terminal. Tickets and service schedules are available online on Desaru Coast's website and Batam Fast's website. According to a press release issued by the Desaru Coast Destination Resort and Desaru Link Ferry Services, the ferry services will operate one round trip service per day from Thursday to Sunday.Contact us here for further details.
Summary of Entry Rules
Certificate of full Vaccination
Downloading of tracing local application/forms at the following links:
A fee of IDR 500,000 (USD 25 approx.) per person is charged upon arrival In Indonesia.
No medical/travel insurances required for Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore.
Starting from July 17, Indonesia will reimpose a Covid-19 testing requirement for international and domestic travellers who haven’t received their booster vaccine in order to curb a resurgence in cases. Find more information here.
Holywings in Bali
Holywings has been under intense spotlight over the past month due to a religious controversy surrounding a social media promotion offering free gin for guests named Muhammad and Maria, which led to the closure of their outlets in Jakarta and beyond. It seems plans for the Indonesian bar chain to open a beach club in Bali remain unaffected, as the venue is said to be on schedule for opening in July. Actress and social media influencer Nikita Mirzani, who is a shareholder at Holywings, said in her recent Instagram post that the chain aims to open one of the biggest beach fest clubs in Asia.
A Revamped LAT website
During the month of July, we will launch our newly revamped website. A new design and additional features to keep you informed and updated with concrete contents, Lotus Asia Tours style.