Sail Cenderawasih Bay (STC) 2023 will be held in Papua. This event aims to strengthen the government’s vision, namely making Indonesia the world maritime fulcrum. In addition, it aims to accelerate development in Papua, especially in Biak Numfor regency in the economic and tourism fields, which in turn will improve prosperity of Papuans.
Biak Numfor is a strategic region owing to its location at the mouth of the Pacific islands. The archipelago has great tourism, fishery, and maritime potential, which benefit the region’s economy. President Joko Widodo aspires for Indonesia to become the world’s maritime fulcrum. To realise that goal, marine potential must be supported so that it can be further developed as a source of prosperity for the Indonesian people.
The goal of staging the STC 2023 is to accelerate the development of marine resources and tourism to increase the prosperity of the people, particularly those living in the coastal areas and small islands of ancestral Sareri lands. The STC 2023 event is in line with the President’s priority agenda of Nawacita to develop Indonesia from the periphery by strengthening regions and villages within Indonesia.
According to Velix Wanggai, the Vice President’s Deputy Secretary for Government Policy the staging of the event is a government effort to speed up development in Papua, particularly in traditional Sareri lands. These lands consist of the regencies of Biak Numfor, Supiori, Waropen and Yapen Islands. These are located in the Pacific region and are rich in fishery, maritime, and tourism potential.
“STC 2023 will not only be filled with ceremonial events, but was created to improve the economy of indigenous Papuan communities,” he said in a statement on 5 December 2022.
The wealth of Papua’s marine fishery sector as well as marine tourism in the Sareri ancestral areas present great potential for developing the tourism industry in the region. Some areas such as the Biak and Supiori islands are strategically located at the mouth of the Pacific Ocean, with tourism, fisheries, and culture as their leading sectors. Other areas with great potential include the Yapen islands that are well-known for being the habitat of birds of paradise as well as its turtle conservation program, as well as Asiwerini island, known for its vast mangrove forest, earning it the epithet of ‘land of 100 mangroves’. With such abundant resources, STC 2023 is a concrete example of government policy to raise the economic potential and develop the Papuan tourism sector as a priority regional program. In addition, it is hoped that the event can strengthen the unity of traditional Papuan communities and accelerate development in the region.