Bali to crack down on foreign tourists using crypto as payment

DENPASAR, Bali: Bali’s provincial government will crack down on foreign tourists using crypto as a means of payment in hotels, restaurants, tourism destinations, shopping centres and other places.

“Foreign tourists who behave inappropriately, do activities that are not allowed in their visa permit, use crypto as a means of payment and violate other provisions will be dealt with firmly,” Bali Governor Wayan Koster said at a tourism development press conference on Sunday (May 28).

The meeting was attended by Bali Police Chief Inspector General Putu Jayan Danu Putra and other parties.

“Strict actions range from deportation, administrative sanctions, criminal penalties, closure of business premises and other tough sanctions,” Mr Koster said.

He also reiterated that the use of currencies other than rupiah as a means of payment in Indonesia was prohibited.

According to Indonesian law, if one uses other forms of currency other than rupiah, they can face imprisonment of up to one year and a maximum fine of 200 million rupiah (US$13,300).

“People who carry out foreign exchange business activities without permission from Bank Indonesia can be punished with imprisonment for one-year minimum and five-year maximum, and a minimum fine of 50 million rupiah and a maximum (fine) of 22 billion rupiah,” Mr Koster said.

“Violations will be subject to administrative sanctions in the form of written reprimands, obligations to pay fines, and prohibitions from payment transactions.”

Crypto, as an asset, is allowed in Indonesia but it is banned as a payment instrument, added the head of Bank Indonesia, Bali Representative Office Trisno Nugroho.

Image by: Reuters/Johannes P. Christo

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