Tourism is like a two-edged sword. Thanks to the island’s emerging hospitality industry, Bali is now
one of the provinces in Indonesia with the highest income. However, with many hotels and
restaurants chains are to be built, it seems that many farmers have to sacrifice their rice fields. I B
Wisnuardhana, the head of Bali’s department of Crops, Horticulture and Plantations told IDN Times
recently that approximately 550 hectares or 0,4 percent land in Bali had turned to many new hotels
and restaurants every year from 2013 to 2017 and it is increasing. To make it even worse, most of
the land used to be productive rice fields.
Among the eight regions and one city in Bali, Tabanan farmers have lost their 363 hectares of rice
fields in 2017– which is the biggest, when sadly, the region owns the largest rice field in Bali and also
the island’s biggest rice producers.
The data by Gianyar’s department of agriculture also revealed that in 2017, around 100 hectares of
rice fields in the region has been changed for houses, hotels and restaurants. Further investigation
revealed that the number even appeared to be bigger in reality since some farmers refused to report
it with unknown reasons.
During his current visitation to Gianyar on Monday (10/7), the vice governor of Bali, Tjok Ace
reminds farmers to not sell their land and urge officials in villages in Bali to work together to protect
the land, as reported by Kilas Bali. The Bali government have issued its new law No 4 the Year 2019
which can be used as the legal force to keep farmers not to sell their lands.
Photo source: Unsplash