Indonesia-UAE Establish Travel Corridor: Salient Features
- Indonesia and the UAE have established a travel corridor to facilitate official and diplomatic trips between the two countries.
- Travelers will have to adhere to strict health protocols, such as presenting a negative COVID-19 PCR test to immigration officials. This will exempt them from having to undergo the two-week quarantine measure.
- Both governments are hoping the travel corridor can help accelerate economic recovery and facilitate new investments.
- The UAE agreed to invest US$22.8 billion in Indonesia, in a historic trade deal signed in January 2020.
Indonesia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) have established a travel corridor between the two countries, in effect from July 29, 2020.
The travel corridor facilitates official business and diplomatic trips – although under strict health protocols, such as providing a negative COVID-19 certificate at the respective borders. Travelers that adhere to these protocols are exempt from the two-week quarantine measure upon entering each other’s countries.
The travel arrangement is part of ongoing efforts by both countries to accelerate economic recovery, in particular, since the UAE is set to invest some US$22.8 billion into Indonesia over the coming years as per a historic trade deal signed early in the year, in January.Several countries in ASEAN have already implemented this travel bubble concept as a means to encourage business recovery across various sectors. Singapore established the Singapore-China fast lane in June 2020, which enables selected people to travel between the provinces of Chongqing, Guangdong, Jiangsu, Shanghai, Tianjin, and Zhejiang and Singapore. Additionally, Malaysia and Singapore reopened their borders to essential business and workers from each other’s’ countries from August 17, 2020.
Indonesia is also keen to establish a travel corridor for essential business activities with China and South Korea who are among the top five sources of foreign investment in the country.
What are the types of visas travelers should apply for?
For Indonesian nationals
Indonesian nationals traveling to the UAE can apply for:
- Entry permits for short visits (business), valid for 14 days;
- Entry permits for long visits (business), valid for 90 days; or
- Diplomatic visas.
For UAE nationals
UAE nationals traveling to Indonesia can apply for:
- A single-entry business visa, valid for 60 days;
- A single-entry limited stay visa; or
- Diplomatic visas.
What are the health protocol measures?
Travelers must take a COVID-19 PCR test at least 72 hours before travel. This certificate must be presented upon immigration checks. Three days after the expiration date of the health certificate, the traveler must take a COVID-19 rapid test at their own expense. If found to be reactive, they must take a PCR swab test at the nearest designated hospital/healthcare facility.
The inviting institutions or business entities are responsible for the well-being of the traveler, and that they adhere to all COVID-19 protocols in the respective countries.
Where are the points of entry?
The points of entry under this travel corridor are:
- Soekarno-Hatta International Airport;
- Juanda International Airport;
- Kuala Namu International Airport; and
- Ngurah Rai International Airport.
- Abu Dhabi International Airport;
- Dubai International Airport;
- Sharjah International Airport; and
- Ras Al Khaima International Airport.
Indonesia eager to accelerate historic trade deal
The UAE’s US$22.8 billion planned investment is considered the single largest in Indonesia’s history.
The majority of the investments will go towards the establishment of an Indonesian sovereign wealth fund, with US$6.8 billion of the total amount going towards Indonesia’s logistics, mining, port construction, energy, and agriculture sectors.
Further, the UAE and Japanese conglomerate SoftBank Group have shown interest in investing in Indonesia’s new capital in East Kalimantan province on the island of Borneo. The government wants to begin construction in 2021 with the site set to be four times larger than the current capital Jakarta, at a cost of some US$33 billion.
The government aims to have this administrative center operational by 2024 and be a smart and green city equipped with modern infrastructure and public utilities.