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Surabaya to become alcohol free city

The second-largest city in Indonesia, Surabaya, has approved a bylaw that bans the production, distribution and consumption of alcoholic beverages.

    “If in three months [Governor] Soekarwo does not respond to this bylaw, it would be enacted directly in Surabaya. The bylaw does not contradict to any regulation because we have consulted the Home Ministry,” Armuji, speaker of the Surabaya Legislative Council, said on Friday.

    According to the bylaw, punishments would include the issuance of warning letters, administration fines, temporary closure of businesses, revocation of business licenses and the shutting down of businesses.

    “Offenders would also face three months imprisonment or pay a fine of Rp 50 million. The bylaw covers any kind of alcoholic beverage, such as beer or others with more than 10 percent alcohol, including traditional beverages and mixed alcoholic beverages [oplosan],” Armuji said.

    Islands focus: Surabaya to be an alcohol-free city - The Jakarta Post

    this should be good for tourism , and an incentive for investment , what a joke !

With all the Chinese weddings held at the Shangri-La, with guests numbering up to 5,000 (no exaggeration), fat chance of this ever being approved across the board and without exceptions.

The impetus for this is a recent spat of alcohol related rapes and attention drawn to the low sentences often handed down in rape and sexual abuse cases.

Count on Uncle Karwo to provide some “reasonable” approach to rectify this problem without imposing a full on across the board ban.  ;)

Good news !!! Wish it be applied all over Indonesia, fed up of drunk ppl causing troubles in Streets espicially on Saturday Nights.

I've hardly seen any drunks in Indonesia, but I don't go to bars.
I prefer the Malaysian way.
Alcohol isn't banned, but Muslims aren't allowed to buy it.

now that sounds very civilised

It will be interesting to see if anything comes of this.

Nothing will come of it.  Way, way too many rupiah in tax revenues at stake.

Surabaya is ending up with trying to build image of purity.
Images of purity always bring radicalism rather than moderate views.

Good luck trying to emulate Aceh.
What a boring place, Surabaya would be without all the wine fine dining and beer bar.

****

Moderated by Priscilla last year
Reason : off topic - please focus on surabaya

I'd just like to add that I have no problem with that bylaw as firstly I am a muslim, and secondly I have never been much of a drinker even before I converted.

Regards,
Hansson

**

Moderated by Christine last year
Reason : inappropriate content

Perhaps this would be a good time to remind posters to stick to facts or things we have direct evidence for, perhaps in personal experience.

I have asked the poster concerned to provide details of any restrictions that we might well be unaware of.
I'm sure he'll do so, thus solving the problem.

Perhaps we can stick to Surabaya

Surabaya has always been seen as not the centre of tension and demonstration. And seem holding moderate views.
The recent moves to outlaw alcohol and "dolly" seems as moving to harsher environment. This has the support of the law makers and executive. Not just some civil organisation.

***

Moderated by Priscilla last year
Reason : Links removed - please start a new topic if you wish to talk about Lombok

Now, to the topic in hand........

First, they banned alcohol and beer sales in convenience stores.  Their rationale was to reduce the health issues associated with drinking homemade liquor.  Seriously.  Really backwards logic.  Now this bill to outright ban consumption.  Besides the number of businesses that will go under as a result, the result of both of these laws will inevitably mean a spike in homemade alcohol consumption, bootlegging, and of course bribes being paid to look the other way....  If the leaders of this country were truly concerned about its citizens health, they'd spend more time passing legislation and enforcing it: banning the burning of trash inside the city, enact emission control of motor vehicles, give fines for polluting, etc...  And putting in a few actual parks (not these tiny strips of grass that they call parks) couldn't hurt...  These laws are an obvious, if only slightly veiled attempt to impose Islamic morality on the population in a country that supposedly has freedom of religion.  And yet you don't see any other religious laws being passed as secular...

The new law helps the police to make more money and is in line with Indonesia's policy of passing sanctions on itself. Just make it yourself. Alcohol making is the oldest chemical process invented by humans. Better to stay away from drinking establishments anyway. On the negative side it will escalate the drug trade which is very illegal now.

"The new law helps the police to make more money..."

What the police can, or do currently make on alcohol cases in Surabaya is a tiny fraction of the tax revenue generated by legal alcohol sales there.

Nothing is going to happen.  This is just another "float the idea" and see what comes of it.  In other words, "much to do about nothing."

Yeah. Alcohol is being controlled so much now. Used to be able to buy it anywhere even warung and indomaret in supermarkets. Then in Tangerang about 8 or 9 yead ago. Suddenly. No warning. On Chinese New Year boom. No booze in the shops. There were duty free shops . Just show passport and buy really cheep booze. Those days are gone .  Some people say too many alcohol related crimes others say its to do with islaam. Whatever the reason . It will not be good for tourism. Not that Surabaya is a huge tourist magnet anyway  but .. I say good.  Alcohol is an awful awful drug. Almost everywhere in the World. Corporations and governments. Media.. push alcohol. It is acceptable to be alcohol abusive or dependant. The public are conditioned into believing not only can they not enjoy a night out , a party, celebration, public holiday or any occasion without having to drink but there is always an excuse to have a drink. Also people excuse themselves for drinking to get over a crisis or problem. Its nuts. Alcohol is the gateway drug to heavy drugs. Is the root of most accidents, fights, mental and physical illness, financial problems, mental and physical domestic and public violence, gambling, rape, infidelity, absence from school, collage , work ... but a drunken population is easy to control. Happy with the TV and a beer. So whatever the reasons. At the end of the day. Your caring government which is under control of psychopathic corporations. Want you drinking because ? They win all the way and the poor sod sop alcoholic loses all.

Haha...it's quite strong words, but I totally agree with you.

I do see drinking as being addictive, same as smoking. Something that people find hard to give up. Perhaps it's something that many foreigners used to do back home and continue to do in Indonesia, difficult to give up and always have an excuse be it to be sociable, to forget their worries or stress or to drink something cold and refreshing or to remember how it is to be back home. I actually see it as a weakness. So I have no problem should alcohol become a banned substance in Indonesia.

An alcohol ban isn't my cup of tea, but I like to see the practical side of everything.
I should declare myself as a non drinking ex drunken biker to avoid any suggestion I'm hiding bias.

Alcohol is a bit pointless as anything that can be done over booze can be done without it.

If you don't drink:

1 - You save a lot of cash
2 - Vomiting is less common
3 - Drunken fights don't happen
4 - Hangovers don't happen
5 - You feel better
6 - you don't get as fat

There are good sides to beer:

1 - Booze improves your dancing
2 - Booze makes you sing a lot better and people love to hear you perform
3 - Ugly people can get sex

let us not forget alcohol, in moderation, is of benefit to health and longevity.

After reading these last few posts (except Tel's), I thought for a second that maybe my computer had taken me to a Temperance Society forum!   :lol:

Seriously though, if one believes that lessons are to be learned through history, then the experience that the US went through in the early 20th century with prohibition should teach a lot.  Not only did the government lose countless millions of dollars in tax revenue during those years, but low quality bootleg booze caused far more health problems than did the legal booze being consumed both pre and post prohibition.  In other words, prohibition was a total failure.

If in fact Surabaya goes through with this total ban on alcohol, and I seriously doubt it will.  That perception cannot be good for Indonesia, and certainly not good for tourism or foreign investment.

The comparison between prohibition in the US and an Indonesian city banning it is a little off because the cultural differences make it invalid.

The PR side is bad news for Indonesia's tourist trade and won't do much for Indonesia's image throughout the world if the western press decide to make a meal of it.

tel522 :

let us not forget alcohol, in moderation, is of benefit to health and longevity.

Haha...yup they say a glass of red wine is good for you, although it usually ends up as a bottle or two. But most importantly, when people drink their judgement is impaired and they no longer think straight. They may wake up not knowing what happened the night before.

“The comparison between prohibition in the US and an Indonesian city banning it is a little off because the cultural differences make it invalid.”

We could discuss that…but, America in the early 20th century was a vast melting pot of endless cultures, so how to even to define American culture of the early 20th century?

Surabaya, being Indonesia’s second largest city and with a population of almost 3 million people…and again, with a rich mixture of cultures…how to define it?

People are people, and the point is, when a government tells them “you can’t have that” they’ll find a way…and that way, when it comes to booze, invariable boils down to bootleg liquor. 

“Haha...yup they say a glass of red wine is good for you, although it usually ends up as a bottle or two. But most importantly, when people drink their judgement is impaired and they no longer think straight. They may wake up not knowing what happened the night before.”

That’s an extreme position and based on the supposition (which I regard as false) that all folks who drink, can’t drink responsibly…viz a glass of wine with dinner, a cocktail before dinner, a cognac with an espresso after dinner, a beer with friends after work, etc., etc. 

Taking away all the toys just because a minority few can’t play responsibly is not a logical solution.

I don't believe it is an extreme position at all. Just consider all the people killed on roads by drunk drivers. The rapes by either drunk victims or drunk offenders, the arguments and fights and football hooliganism which fortunately we don't get much of here. One simply cannot underestimate the affect that drinking alcohol has on people in everyday life.

Now if they banned alcohol in south Bali, it might even become a nicer place.

But let's ask ourselves why people drink alcohol at all? To forget about the problems we face? To be able to "let go"? That is probably the reason for many. In Europe, France, Spain and Italy, they do have a glass of red wine at lunch time, and they counter it with a strong expresso afterwards.

Ubudian :


Surabaya, being Indonesia’s second largest city and with a population of almost 3 million people…and again, with a rich mixture of cultures…how to define it?

Easy peasy.

The city is around 85% Muslim.

Most of the other stuff doesn't much matter, but that says well over 80% of the population won't care either way about the law or will support it.
Many Indonesian Christians, the second largest religious group in Surabaya, don't drink at all, so many of them will do as above.

Unlike America of the time, the vast majority of the population don't care about drinking,  so the criminal gangs won't be able to get a foothold into the illegal alcohol trade.

Let's be direct, the only people who drink that illegally brewed stuff are all idiots anyway, and you can't cure stupidity so people of that nature will still kill themselves regardless of banning commercially brewed products or not.

Locally, save a few percent of the population, no one will give a flying rat's arse about the law.

OK, clearly, I'm "in the wrong room" so I'll pass on any further discussion.  ;)

Cheers!

maybe the government  should consider banning fast food , or all the other unhealthy things that are eaten here in indonesia with the inevitable health effects on the local population .

That's not a silly as it might seem. One of our doctor friends keep telling us that Nasi Padang should be banned as it is a major source of heart attacks and of people dying young here. Unfortunately it happens to be my favourite, but I know eat it about once a month. As for fast foods, that would be great since this country offers so much amazing local food.

They can do what they want with McD but banning nasi padang would be a crime.
For those who have never tried it, imagine heaven with a massage from 20 fit angels, and you're close.

sounds wonderful !

Nasi padang rocks my boat for sure…it’s great.  BUT, babi guling capsizes it entirely and beats nasi padang any day of the week.  Of course, one must wash it down with either a cold beer or a vodka martini!   :lol:

Opps...I must be in the wrong room again!   :D

Very few of the bad/dangerous/death causing/drivers/riders on the road are drunk (have ever been drunk) but simply have no regard for road safety.

Mafia is as strong here now as it was in America during the prohibition. At the end of the line (quite possibly) is an individual in some position of power who wants pamper the ego.
Staying with mafia.. one example.
Most of the chemical drugs market in Indonesia is produced inside the prisons.
Fast food , gmo, cigarettes, chemical rich body care and beauty products , perfumes , plastic products , fuel pollition , nestle ,walls ,coca-cola , danone, etc (huge global corporations products) equally if not more poisonous and even addictive as the alcohol products. This is not an issue about physical or mental health. The powers that  profit from the publics illness .. so remember "A healthy patient is a lost customer".
I could go on. But I do not want to be "labay"

Ubudian :

Nasi padang rocks my boat for sure…it’s great.  BUT, babi guling capsizes it entirely and beats nasi padang any day of the week.  Of course, one must wash it down with either a cold beer or a vodka martini!   :lol:

Opps...I must be in the wrong room again!   :D

Bali is the correct room, but Surabaya could be the wrong one in this case.
Babi is available in Surabaya, but it's not popular.
The cold beer and vodka are more of an issue as far as this thread goes.

I thought I'd take a look at possible issues regarding tourism, but don't see many tourist spots that require drinking the pop.
http://www.eastjava.com/tourism/surabaya/

I'm pretty sure a booze ban would destroy Bali, but it's unlikely the same would do much to Surabaya.

As I understood it the government of RI wanted to increase tourism all over indonesia, re the proposed alcohol ban in surabaya , a few days ago  some members of parliament wished the proposed ban to be extended all over indonesia including local production , ya these things come up every ramadan , but if it gets through forget about tourism , also its a dis-incentive for investment here .

we shall see !
30 may
News  from Jakarta Post page 2....

If passed, law will impose full nationwide ban on production, distribution, consumption of drinks with 1%-55% alcohol content House expects to pass bill by July 28.


“The title will be deliberated later to speed up the process,” said leader of a House special committee for the alcohol prohibition bill, Mohammad Arwani Thomafi, a lawmaker from the United Development Party (PPP) which, together with fellow Islamoriented party the Prosperous Justice Party (PKS), has sponsored the bill.

That would include Bali, a tourist spot where drinking until passed out isn't required by law, but is very common.

I see tourist numbers taking a serious dive if that law gets passed.

"That would include Bali, a tourist spot where drinking until passed out isn't required by law, but is very common."

Only in Kuta, Fred, and primarily, only when it's Ozzie school holiday time.

Let's be fair now.   You can see for yourself, when you finally make it here.   ;)

BTW, I checked with my friend who used to be the executive chef at the Shangri-La Hotel in Surabaya (2007-2009) and he told me that 40% of all food and beverage revenue there were alcohol drinks...beer and wine included.  F&B at that hotel accounts for about 60% of total hotel revenue. 

Tel, when somebody sits down the leaders of those parties sponsoring a full country wide ban and shows them the figures for alcohol tax revenues generated each year, trust me...they'll sober up fast!   :top:  As you note, this happens every Ramadan.  It's kind of a tradition now.

yap , crazy country , we call home ha ha

Dude, if I ever get down to Bali I will guarantee not visiting anywhere packed with drunks.
I was attempting to become an alcoholic for several years but could never get the hang of alcohol dependency so I might well be considered a failure as far as that goes.
I called drinking a day after one very unfortunate event I could have stopped had I been sober, but that's another story, and a jolly sad one at that.
The problem with being an ex drinker is you see yourself in every drunken idiot on the street, and it disgusted me to think I was once that pathetic.

From an objective point of view, I see any potential alcohol ban as a bad idea as it's self banning for the vast majority of Indonesians anyway, and the daft end who buy fake booze are stupid enough to buy it regardless of the pop being illegal or not.

tel522 :

yap , crazy country , we call home ha ha

Even with its quirks, I love Indonesia with a passion.

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