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Albanese calls for Indonesia white paper, more tourists to Australia

Anthony Albanese signs a guest book as Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi looks on at the Indonesia foreign ministry office in Jakarta.Credit:AAP

At present, Australians can travel to Indonesia without a visa and stay for up to a month, but Indonesian tourists have to undergo a lengthy application process that is time consuming, costs $140 per person, and asks questions such as whether the individual has committed genocide, war crimes, crimes against humanity, torture, slavery and a host of other questions.

“We have in this vast country, across the archipelago, a rising middle class that has the potential for a considerable increase in tourism to Australia from Indonesia,” he said.

“At the moment, Indonesia is the second highest destination for visitors from Australia [more than million Australians visit annually] after New Zealand. The fact is that the numbers going back the other way are around about 200,000, it could grow to much more.

“We should have a common sense solution to that [the visa issue], recognising that we are in a competitive global environment.”