The government of East Nusa Tenggara will hold the 2018 Tour de Flores event this coming November.
The event has been included in the permanent annual event calendar and was supposed to be held in May, but it is being postponed until September as the government needed to gather their resources, Head of Tourism Promotion from the East Nusa Tenggara Tourism Office, Eden Klakik, told Antara in Kupang on Wednesday.
"It was supposed to be held in May; however, we only had Rp2 billion allocated, while we needed Rp5 billion. Therefore, the organizers decided to not hold the event," he noted.
He further stated that the local government has decided to allocate another Rp3.5 billion to the event in the 2018 Regional Budget revision, which has led the organizers to agree to hold the event in September.
In terms of preparation, the office is currently getting ready for the Sandalwood Horse Parade in Sumba island, which will take place from July 7 to 14, and they will be gearing up to prepare for the event as soon after the parade finishes.
Last year, East Nusa Governor Frans Lebu Raya expressed hope that the international cycling event will be beneficial for the public, particularly the residents of Flores Island.
"We hope the public are more ready, so they could enjoy financial benefits too," he remarked.
He urged the local community to demonstrate hospitality to the tours participants.
"Friendliness and comfort are the main keys for everyone to make them return to the province," Lebu Raya asserted.
East Nusa Tenggara, known as a province of one thousand islands, plans to organize the two international cycling events on the islands of Flores and Timor annually to promote tourism in the region and at the international level.
The province offers a wide array of natural scenery, culture, ethnicity, handicrafts, ancient sites, and unique traditions that could be showcased to foreign tourists, he revealed. (ANTARA)