There’s a famous dragon tourism in Indonesia that is gaining a lot of attention from all over the world. This dragon is the endangered Komodo that lives in the Komodo Dragon Island. There, only a handful of Komodos are left to live in the wild.
Tourists are able to see what these animals are like in the Komodo National Park. Surely this tourism will bring more awareness to protect these precious creatures. But what about the locals who live alongside with them on the island? How are they affected by this sort of tourism that only grows larger by the year?
In this 25 Local Economic Impacts of Dragon Tourism in Indonesia, we will be able to see just how much the dragon tourism has brought great changes to their lives. Both, the good and the bad, are discussed down below.
1. Developing Ecotourism
Through the undying enthusiasm of tourists who want to see the Komodos, ecotourism in Indonesia can continue to develop. The dragons attract more and more tourists to visit the area. It brings awareness to how important it is to keep these animals to exist. Other than that, the tourism bring in income that can help the island to grow economically.
Also read: Indonesian Komodo Dragon Facts
2. Improving Local Buildings
The infrastructure of the local area can improve through dragon tourism. Additional money means more opportunity to build facilities that ensure the wellbeing of the locals. Schools, hospitals or other tourism amenities can start to be built on the island.
3. Improve Families’ Welfare
Poor families will have a better conditions when important buildings are available in the island. For instance, hospitals are crucial for people so they can stay healthy. Without hospitals, the locals will have to travel far just so they can get the right treatment. Local hospitals can reduce the money needed for locals to spend.
4. Income for Conservation
It brings in money for the local area and also stresses on the importance of sustainable tourism. As these dragons are endangered animals, it’s important to keep them safe. The cost of that is not cheap. But having hundred thousands of tourists each year can cover all the necessary cost that locals need to protect the animals.
See also: Natural Resources of Indonesia
5. Income for Local People
The Komodo National Park will definitely give the locals a wider variety of jobs and skills. They can start to earn their incomes from that. The income that they earn from their jobs will help the community to prosper. The locals can use the skills that they have learned to look for jobs outside the island if they want to.
6. Budget for Equipments
Equipments for the Komodo National Park are not cheap. Essential things such as antibiotics or other equipments for park rangers need a lot of money too. Antibiotics are crucial for treating any injuries that are caused by the Komodo. The tourism can provide additional budget for the park. They can buy the necessary things needed to protect the locals and the visitors.
7. Inflation in Food
Unfortunately, there is a downside to the economic aspect of dragon tourism in Indonesia. For instance, the locals are experiencing inflation. A lot of people from other places are coming into the islands in search for jobs or a better life. The price for food has increased with that occasion. Locals will definitely face problems in purchasing their goods that help to keep them alive.
Also read: Effects of High Inflation in Indonesia
8. Increased Housing Prices
It’s not just the price of food that’s rising. Housing in the island is also getting pretty expensive. As people are moving into the island, the price has also been raised. Locals in the island may find difficulty in purchasing homes if the price is too outstanding.
9. Increased Land Value
Although the price of houses might become expensive, it means that there is an increasing value for land. Existing lands, buildings or natural reserves will be seen to have more worth than before. This can provide more income for the people who owns the properties. Also, the natural reserves will have more chance of being protected.
Read more: Largest Caves in Indonesia
10. Provide New Job Fields
The number one job field in the island used to be fishing. But since the 1990s, the number of fish has greatly reduced. But with tourism, new job fields are open to the locals. They can apply for jobs to the Komodo National Park. That will give them economic security while living on the island.
See also: Unusual Jobs in Indonesia
11. Give Education Opportunity for Locals
New jobs will provide a greater opportunity for locals to pursue higher education. The income that they earn can be saved for school. It’s important for the people in the local community to get the education that they deserve. They will be able to improve themselves and bring positive changes to the community.
12. Loss of Other Sources for Livelihood
Besides fishing, there are other sources of livelihood that are no longer achievable in the island because of tourism. These activities include hunting and farming. They are closely related to the culture of the community. Those with the appropriate skills can’t fully use them to their full potential because they are not needed on the island.
13. Importing Materials
The local community has to start importing materials needed for buildings. When tourism wasn’t as big as it is now, they were able to gather wood or palm fibres in the nature for how much as they want. But they can’t do that any longer. They have to spend more money to get other materials from outside the island.
Also see: Natural Treasure in Indonesia
14. Crafting Materials
Tourism has pushed the locals to create so much more. Now they can craft materials related to the island or the Komodo as souvenirs. They are the sort of things that tourists always look for. As long as the locals continue to perfect their skills, their souvenirs will provide them with the money that they need.
15. Limited Activities for Locals
The activities of the locals have been limited due to tourism. For certain activities, they need to ask for permission first. The Komodo National Park has also instilled policies that the locals feel too exclusive. This highly reduce the freedom that the locals can have in terms of finding other source of livelihoods.
Read more: Endangered Animals in Indonesia
16. Growth of Small Businesses
Small businesses run by the locals can grow with tourism. That will provide the locals with a better economic condition. When the tourists start to increase in numbers, the business will also have a chance to become bigger. This can suppress the number of international businesses growing on the island that could reduce the locals’ opportunity to succeed.
17. Budgets for Promotional Campaign
Promotional campaign is important in the island. It will attract more people from all over the world to come and visit the island. Active campaigning engages more people. It will in turn give more budget for other promotional plans.
Read more: What Not to Miss in Indonesia
More Impacts for the Local Economy (18-25)
Listed below are some more impacts that benefit the local economy to the island.
- Reduce Dependancy: Locals won’t have to depend so much on other regions for income any longer.
- Add New Attractions: New attractions are always needed to attract tourists.
- Donations for People: Poor people can be helped through tourism income.
- Create Proffesional Workers: Professionality would mean better job prospects for the locals.
- Gives Public Transportations: Make it easier for people to get around the island.
- Exposure to Other Parts of the World: Bring in more tourists or even build relations to other countries.
- Build Entertainment Facilities: Entertain locals and visitors while also gaining money.
- Preserve Heritage: Customs and traditions can be preserved with the help of money.
Tourism has certainly give positive impacts to the local economy of the Komodo Island. Although there might be some downsides to it, the locals are always striving to make tourism to move in their favour. The locals love the dragons and if tourism will protect their habitat then they are willing to make it work.