Policy Management in Small Island Tourism: A Case Study of

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Policy Management in Small Island Tourism: A Case Study of
Volume : 3 | Issue : 9 | Sept 2013 | ISSN - 2249-555X
Policy Management in Small Island Tourism: A Case
Study of Poncan Gadang Island, Indonesia
management policy, small island tourism, coral reefs’ damage
Hamzah Lubis
Prof.Dr.Ir. Sengli J.Damanik
Lecturer at Institut Teknologi Medan (Medan Institute
of Technology) Student of Doctoral Program in
Department of Environmental and Natural Resource
Management, University of Sumatera Utara.
Professor at University of Sumatera Utara
Prof.Ir. Zulkifli Nasution
Prof.Dr.Chalida Fachruddin
Professor at University of Sumatera Utara
Professor at University of Sumatera Utara
ABSTRACT The government of Indonesia has set some policies on exploiting tourism resources of small islands through
the sustainable management program of tourism related activities in order to improve the welfare of the local
people in the economic, social and cultural field as well as to enhance regional development.
The study investigates the implementation of tourism management policies in Poncan Gadang Island, Sibolga City - Indonesia by tourism stakeholders. The tourism stakeholders include local government, tourism entrepreneurs, tourists and local
people. The data of policy implementation were collected by interview method using questionaires.
Results of the study showed that implementation of tourism management policies in Poncan Gadang Island had not been
sustainable in managing the environment. The policies had not yet improved the welfare of the local people as well as
provided multiplier effects in the economy. However,the condition of the coral reefs of the Poncan Gadang Island degraded
after the island became a tourist spot. The local people still had low capacity resulting in low participation in managing the
environment so that the damage of the coral reefs in there was dominantly conducted by local fishermen. Furthermore, the
number of hotels decreased and small scale business in handicraft souvenirs had not been developed yet.
In order that tourism management in Poncan Gadang Island is compatible with the policies, it is recommended to change
the concept of mass tourism into special interest tourism focusing on natural resources and environment that involves the
tourism stakeholders in the implementation.
Indonesia has a huge potential for tourism purposes. Initially,
Indonesia tended to focus on cultural tourism with the destination choices, such as, Bali, Yogyakarta and Tanah Toraja.
In its development, tourism orientation shifted from mass
tourism to special interest tourism (Tondang, 2007) with the
purposes ranging from cultural into nature tourism (Setiono,
2003). This shift is consistent with the trend of bringing people to return to the nature. Therefore, nature tourism develops, such as, Komodo National Park with its famous biota
Komodo, Bunaken National Park with its coral reefs and other
nature attractions.
Indonesia has a huge potential for nature tourism in small
islands. As an archipelagic country, Indonesia has 17.500 islands with a coastline of 81.000 km (Dahuri, 2003). Of 17.500
islands, only five are large islands, the rests are small islands.
Development of small islands is a must since the economic
values of nature tourism in small islands gives income multiplier effects to other economic activities which are potentially
estimated between U.S. $ 0.55 to U.S. $ 0.67 (Fauzi, 2005).
One of the small islands that has been managed as a coral
reefs’tourist site is Poncan Gadang Island in Sibolga City,
North Sumatera Province, Indonesia.
Development of nature tourism in small islands has not
been optimalized due to limited infrastructures of the region, limited development funds, conflicts among organizations (Mawardi, 2007), also the absence of specific policies and strategies for developing small islands (Apdillah,
2006). The development of small islands requires special
policies and strategies because small islands have specific
characteristics of tourism resources and local people, and
the management of those characteristics involves many
stakeholders(Tomboelu, 2000).
The stakeholders who manage small island tourism refer to local government, tourism entrepreneurs and local
people(Sekneg, 2009;Depbudpar2004, Soekadijo, 2010).
While,Tauhid(2007), Ritonga(2012) and Wilson(2012) add
non-governmental organizations and Lubis(2002)includes
college into the term stakeholders. The roles of the stakeholders determine the successful management of nature
tourism in small islands.
The government of Indonesia has set management policies
for tourism in small islands through the Regulation of the
Minister of Culture and Tourism, number 67/2004 on Guidelines for Management of Small Island Tourism. Management
of small island tourism refers to sustainable tourism activities
with the purpose to improve the welfare of the people in the
economic, social and cultural sector as well as to improve
regional development. Sustainable tourism development
may be defined as the development that meets the needs of
tourists and the people in the current destination while maintaining and improving opportunities in meeting the needs in
the long run. Therefore, the indicators of policy implementation for tourism management in small islands include: (1)
increase in sustainable management of the environment, (2)
increase in prosperity(economically, socially and culturally) of
local communities and (3) increase in regional development.
Small island tourism
Small islands which are suitable for regional investment are
the islands lying within the cruise line. They also have the
potential of natural resources and geographic position which
is relative to the center of economic development(Mawardi,
2007). Potential natural resources for tourism are the natural
resources that support tourism businesses. Small island tourism has bright prospects as the demands of coastal tourism
from within and out side the country are increasing; small
island tourism, therefore becomes the dominant tourism in
Indonesia(Dahuri, 1996).
Tourism is traveling from one place to another which is
temporary, voluntary as ​​
an attempt to seek pleasure or
happiness(Spillane, 1987). Tourism can be grouped based on
the number(for example, individual tour, family group tour,
mass tour), the settings (such as, pre-arranged tours, package tours, coach tours, optional tour and arranged a special
tour), and its implementation (for instance, excursion tour,
safari tour, youth tour and marine tour). Tourism on special
arranged tour includes holiday tour, familiarization, education tour, scientific tour, pileimage tour, special mission tour,
special program tour and hunting tour(Suwantoro, 2001).
Tourism destination and attraction of small islands
Concerning the tourism attractions, tourism in small islands
can be divided into natural, cultural and man-made tourist
attractions. The natural tourist attractions are in the form
of natural land resources(such as forests, mountains, rivers,
lakes and beaches) and marine resources(such as coral reefs,
caves and underwater volcanoes). The cultural heritage can
be tangible like sites, tombs, palaces, and in tangible, such
as, cultural performances or cultural traditions. Man-made
tourist attractions in essence are human creations that are
made available to meet the specific needs that directly or indirectly can be the objects and attractions such as shopping,
education, sports, or recreational park(theme park).
Land tourism activities consist of activities of enjoying landscapes, beach sports, wildlife observation, jungle track,
mountain climbing, and so forth. Marine tourism activities include snorkeling, diving, parasailing, surfing, fishing,
water-skiing, canoeing, sea kayaking and so forth. While,
culture-based tourism activities involve fishing, processing
fish, observing daily living habits of the fishermen, seeing the
customs prevailing in the fishing village, looking at the art
of bulding homes of fishermen, watching traditional ceremonies of the fishermen, and so forth (Depbudpar, 2004).
Dealing with the purposes, tourism activities can be distinguished into special interest tourism and mass tourism. In
special interest tourism, tourists visit a place because they
have interests or specific purposes on an object or activity
that can be encountered or performed in the location or in
the tourist destination. In this case, the travelers are actively
involved in various activities or with the local communities in
the tourist sites they are visiting.
Mass tourism means an activity carried out in spare time for
free and fun. In the course of mass tourism there is no specific
goal to be achieved and it is just for fun. The concept of mass
tourism is to bring travelers as many as possible into the tourist sites, and make the most of tourism resources. The concept is more oriented toward artificial facilities(Pendit, 1994)
and in its management it employs workers from out side the
tourist sights(Pitana, 1999). Since the orientation of tourism
entrepreneurs is to increase revenue and the orientation of
tourists is to have fun, the mass tourism may degrade the
environment and exacerbates social and cultural life of the
community (Kusumastuti, 2003).
Considering the characteristics of small islands that are vulnerable to natural resource degradation and have limited
carrying capacity, the development of tourism activities in
small islands are more directed at the development of special
interest tourism activities(Depbudpar, 2004).
Special interest tourism in small islands
Special interest tourism in small islands means nature tourism on land and in sea of small islands. It generally relies
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on a combination of the sun, sea and sand(Dahuri, 1993).
Special interest tourism on the natural resources still damages the environment(Kusumastuti, 2003);while according
to Dahuri(1993) it may have the positive and the negative
impact to the surrounding environment, including social and
local culture when the management is not environmentally
oriented and not community-based(ecotourism) .
Ecotourism is nature tourism activities with the keywords
to protect the environment and improve the well-being
of local people. Ecotourism is a travel to the nature to
preserve and protect the environment(Smith, 1993), increase the economic, social and cultural welfare of local
communities(Carter, 1994;Lidberg, 1995; Suryadi, 2001;Restu, 2002;Zar, 2002;Fitriany2004,Sitanggang, 2006;Tuwo,
2011), increase community participation(Boo, 1992)and
educate the visitors(Fitriany, 2004). Ecotourism is more focused on the preservation than the utilization and partiality
of local communities(Nurfatriani, 2003). Sustainable ecotourism must have dimension of ecology, economy, society and
institution(Susilo, 2005), and Dahuri(2001) adds political and
legal dimension.
Environmental sustainability becomes important for natural
resource-based ecotourism such as coral reefs that are vulnerable and sensitive to changes(Yudaswara, 2004). Community involve men twill preserve, maintain socio-cultural
community and position the community as stakeholder
managers(Nurfatriani, 2003). Even small island ecotourism
is a form of ecotourism leading to meta tourism that does
not trade the purpose or object but the philosophy and
taste(Tuwo, 2011).
Community-based ecotourism
The management of conglomerate-based ecotourism (capitalist) should be replaced with a partnership(Basuki, 1996)ora
community-based(Pardosi, 2006). The government of Indonesia has stated that the small island tourism management
policies should be based on local community(Permenbudpar,
2004). Community-based management can be in the form
of partnerships and populist-based ecotourism. Partnershipbased ecotourism, which is managed jointly in order to have
distribution of responsibilities, authorities and obligations
among stakeholders(Basuki, 1996), relies on the harmonious
collaboration systems in which each stake holder provides
contribution to each other (Pardosi, 2006). Local people living around ecotourism sites are the stake holders who play
important roles in the management of ecotourism(Nurfatriani,
2003). The research done by Basuki(1996) showed that partnerships work effectively because the local people gains benefits.
A community-based ecotourism is implemented of, for and
by the community so that there is almost no government intervention in it(Lamatenggo, 2002). It is fully managed by the
local people, starting from identification of the needs, analysis of capabilities and control over natural resources(Pardosi,
2006). A community-based management is more responsible
for the activities directly affecting local people’s lives(Pitana,
1999). There was no successful management of natural
resources(coral reefs) without the involvement of the local
community(White, 1994).
Policy management of tourism
Policy management of small island tourism
The government of Indonesia has set a policy of exploiting tourism resources of small islands through the decree of
Minister of Culture and Tourism No.67/2004 on the General
Guidelines on Small Island Tourism Development. Small island tourism is a sustainable tourism aiming to improve the
welfare of the community in the economic, social and cultural as well as regional development. Sustainable tourism
development is the development that meets the needs of
tourists and the local people(environment, economy, society, culture) in the current area with the goal of maintaining
and improving opportunities in meeting the needs in the
future(Permenbudpar, 2004). Therefore, the indicators of
small island tourism management are rises in: (1) environmental protection, (2) economic, (3) social, (4) cultural integrity, and(5) regional development.
The management strategies of small island tourism
The management strategies of small island tourism includes approach on spatial planning, feasibility of carrying
capacity, infrastructure development, and environmental
management(Depbudpar, 2004). The spatial planning approach begins with clustering small islands as a basis for the
preparation of zoning based on similar and uniformation of
characteristic; then, organizing clustering as spatial planning
by determining space allocation; followed by arranging spatial structure associated with the center of economic growth,
managing linkages between small islands and the main land
and preparing short, medium, and long term planning.
The carrying capacity approach of tourism in small islands
covers: (1) ecological carrying capacity which is the maximum
level of the uses of an island, (2) physical carrying capacity
which is the maximum amount of uses or activities that could
be accommodated without causing damage or loss of qualities to the small islands, and(3) social carrying capacity which
is the maximum rate limit in the amount and level of uses
that would cause a decrease in the level of quality of the
visitors’experiences or satisfaction in small islands.
The facility and infrastructure approach in small islands has
to go through the Environmental Impact Assessment Study,
and tourism infrastructure development does not exceed to
30% of the island size which is reserved for the development
of tourism and other technical provisions. The environmental,
eco-tourism management approach in small islands should
be developed in an environmentally friendly manner without
causing damage to natural and human resources; however,
it should be able maintain sustainable use of small island
tourism. Identification of critical eco systems as well as the
determination of carrying capacity of small islands is very important in the preparation of planning and development of
tourism in terms of environmental approach and sustainable
The environmental management approach in small islands
should be planned and developed in an environmentally
friendly manner without causing any damage to natural and
human resources; however it should be able to maintain sustainable use of small island tourism. Identification of critical
ecosystems as well as the determination of carrying capacity
of small islands is very important in the preparation of planning and development of tourism in terms of environmental
approach and sustainable development.
Environmental protection policies on small island tourism
Agency policy for environmental management
An agency responsible for the environmental management
has to comply 125 policies on the environmental management sector. The policies include, among others, the determination of management plans and environmental protection, carrying capacity of the environment, eco-regional,
strategic environmental assessment, environmental quality
standards, criteria for environmental damage, environmental
economic instruments, the recognition of indigenous peoples and local wisdom. The policies also the management
of coral reefs, mangroves and sea grass, and marine water
quality for tourism(bathing, swimming and diving). Other
policies are about implementing environmental economic
instruments, the balance of natural resources, restoration
guarantee fund, pollution risk fund, environmental levies and
subsidies, waste/emissions trade, payments for environmental services; environmental insurance, eco-labelling, environmental performance reward, environment-based budget,
environmental risk analysis(Sekneg, 2009a).
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Agency policy for small island management
An agency managing small islands has to follow 58 policies
on small island management sector. The policies include determining: Strategic Plan for Coastal Areas and Small Islands,
Coastal Zoning Plan and Small Islands, Coastal Management
Plan and Small Islands, Action Plan for Coastal Management
and Small Islands and Detailed Zoning Plan. Local governments are obliged to increase public awareness, build partnership between the business community and the government, conduct environmental policy, prevent the decrease
in carrying capacity for small islands, apply environmentally
friendly technologies and provide awards in the field of small
island management(Sekneg, 2007).
Environmental policy for tourism entrepreneurs
The tourism entrepreneurs have 59 obligations on environmental management of tourist sites. The environmental
management policy for them includes conducting an environmental impact assessment, environmental risk analysis,
environmental auditing, environmental function restoration
guarantee fund, recompensing for natural resource damages, paying recovery cost, preserving the environment and
culture, tourism attractions and tourist destinations. Furthermore, the policies state the ban for taking coral reefs for
building materials, aquarium ornaments, handicrafts, flower
coral; dredging sand; and conducting beach reclamation.
The entrepreneurs, moreover, should provide some environmental facilities such as sanitation, waste water management instalation, solid waste management, conservation of
fresh water resources, maintenance for flora, fauna and coral
reef, and not introduce biota from outside the island(Sekneg,
2009,2009a, 2007,Depbudpar,2004).
Environmental policy for travelers
There are 11 travelers’obligations which include respecting
religious norms, customs, culture, and values​​in the community, maintaining and preserving the environment, maintaining
order and security, preventing any action that violates decency and unlawful activities, preserving the attractiveness tour,
creating an atmosphere of safety, orderliness, cleanliness,
conducting polite behavior, and preserving the environment
in tourism destinations(Sekneg in 2009, Depbudpar,2004).
Environmental policy for local community
There are19 policies on local community participation in
small island tourism management. Those policies are in the
form of obligations and restrictions. Such obligations include
protecting and preserving the tourist attraction, creating
an atmosphere of safety, orderliness, cleanliness, conducting polite behavior, preserving sustainable environment for
tourist destinations, controlling pollution and preserving the
environmental nuftah plasm. In the meantime, the restrictions include: destruction of coral reefs, sea grasses and
mangroves, coral reef sutilization, explosive and toxic material application, sand mining, mineral mining, environmental
damage due to physical development, activities that harm
the small coastal islands(Sekneg, 2009,2009a, 2007,Depbudpar, 2004).
Improving the welfare of local people
Development of coastal communities
Administratively, coastal communities are those who live in
small islands and in the subdistricts close to the seas (Sekneg,
2007). Coastal communities are identified with poverty,
which is characterized by slum neighborhoods, low aspirations and access to basic social services, such as, education and health service and other social assistance(Depsos,
2005;Satria, 2002). Powerlessness appears as a result of the
process of dehumanization by various parties(Kartasasmita,
1996). To cope with the issue, the community should be
empowered(empowerment) in order to be able to take them
out of poverty, ignorance, backwardness and to be able to
strengthen the position of the individual and community
in the structure of power(Kartasasmita, 1996, Lumbangaol,
Tourism developmentis not only issues on economy (increasing revenue) but also issues of human dignity(Kusumastanto,
2000). Therefore, development should be a “pedagogy of
liberation” to enhance the dignity, not otherwise to degrade
the human dignity. The development as a process of conscientization is used to foster individual and community critical
awareness of the environment situation and to foster their
ability to control the environment(Amin, 2005).
Coastal community empowerment
Community empowerment functions to improve communities’ abilities(Kartasasmita, 1996). With increased abilities,
they are able toutilize and to preserve coastal resources as well as to improve accessibility towards economic
activities(Butar-butar, 1998). Community capacity building
is geared to generate power such as wealth, social status,
education, information and skill. Therefore, there must
be an improvement of public access to natural resources,
technology, market and funding(Lumbangaol, 2002). With
the empowerment, the local community is no longer the
object but the subject of development. Local communities
act as the reinforcement instead of the support for business
establishment(Lumbangaol, 2002).
Empowering coastal communities requires an understanding
on the unique characteristics of the fishermen socially and
ecologically. Social system of coastal communities depends
partly or wholly on the abundance of coastal and marine
resources(Adiwibowo, 1995). Likewise, ecological system of
small islands is vulnerable to environmental damage(Fauzi,
2005). Therefore, empowering fishermen demands the application of empowerment principles that fit the characteristics
of coastal communities. Tuwo(2011) establishes the principle
of job creation, capital sources, new technological sources,
markets and solidarity and community’s collective actions.
Community empowerment will increase the capacity of the local communities. In this study the capacity of local communities is measured in the form of local communities’knowledge
level, as an attempt to get public’s rights and the level of
public awareness on the environment trelating to the economy of coastal communities.
Empowermentby local government
The local government has 62 policies on local community
empowerment. The policies, among others, include the provisi on for the recognition of cultural identity and granting
rights of local communities, the provision for the recognition as worker/laborer tourism, play a role in the development process, submit proposals/objections of the proposed
business/activity, play a role in the management, make a
complaint, to fight for the environment, participate in surveillance, deliver information/reports, and file for representation
and recognition of indigenous conservation areas. The local
communities has the rights to manage based on customary
law, to obtain benefits, information and recources. The local
communities, then, are empowered in the scopes of implementation of management, government policies, of prevention of decrease in carrying capacity, environmentally friendly
technologies, environmental information, rewards and protection of the rights of the indigenous, traditional societies
and local wisdom(Sekneg , 2007,2009,2009a).
Empowerment by tourism entrepreneurs
Tourism entrepreneurs implement three aspects of tourism
management, as follows. The economic aspect is to improve the economy growth of society; the social aspect is
to create a new social welfare (social progress);the cultural
aspect is to introduce art sand culture of community (cultural
progress);and the environmental aspect is to maintain a harmonious and balanced life (ecological balance) (Soekadijo,
2010) and Spillane(1987) includes the aspect of love of
Community’s economic empowerment
Tourism entrepreneurs have 11 obligations to increase the
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economic capacity of the community. The economic capacity
building policy covers: developing partnerships with micro,
small entrepreneurs and cooperatives, prioritizing the use
of local products, providing employment opportunities to
local workers, prioritizing tourism consignment and to take
part in the tourism management. Company helps to increase
the knowledge and skills of the people, organize tourism
business training, arrange capital investment through share
ownership(Sekneg, 2009,2009a, 2007,2007a, Depbudpar,
Social community empowerment
Tourism entrepreneurs have 10 obligations to improve capacity building of the local community. Those include an active role in local community empowerment programs, mutual
respect between employers and the local community, providing a means of worship, prohibiting all forms of activities
related to gambling, prostitution and drug trafficking in the
areas and surrounding areas of tourism, providing undiscriminative services, giving the correct information about tourism
businesses and preventing unlawful activities and any act that
violates decency(Sekneg, 2009,2009a, 2007,2007a, Depbudpar, 2004).
Cultural empowerment
The government gives respect for cultural identities and
rights of local communities. Local culture is one of the main
tourist atractions. Preservation and development of the culture will increase visitors which will directly increase income of
local community and entrepreneurs. Thus, tourism entrepreneurs have three obligations for building the capacity of local
culture. They include maintaining and respecting religious
norms, customs and tradition, culture and values of
​​ the local
community lives, preserving the natural and cultural environment and giving respect for religious values​​, customs and traditions, and values ​​of the islanders and the local community
living around the island(Sekneg,2009,2009a, 2007,2007a,
Depbudpar, 2004).
Capacity of coastal communities
Lack of community empowerment correlates with low community capacity. Lack of knowledge relates to low education.
Low education is associated with low income (Budiartha,
1999). Khazali’sresearch(2002) shows that empowerment
through coaching, training and assisting positively correlates
with participation of community. Low community capacity indicates that the empowerment of the government and employers has failed. Where as, the low capacity causing low
public participation (Kartasasmita, 1996).
Regional development and small island tourism
Development of tourism has an important and strategic
role in the national development, such as, generate currency exchange, increase employment opportunities, improve incomes and living standards, and stimulate other
sectors(Hatmi, 1993). Tourism holds a dominant role in urging
the regional development(Suardi, 2010,Suwantoro, 1997).
Tourist arrivals in tourist spots will open up business opportunities for hotels, guest houses, restaurants, cafes, transportations, hawkers, sports facilities and services. Tourism is able
to generate economic growth because it can provide jobs,
stimulate various sectors of the economy, as well as contribute directly to the advances in the businesses of constructing and renovating ports, highways, and transporting(Pendit,
19950). Tourism activities provide multiplier effect, which
benefit the transportation sector, also the economic sector,
communication, accommodation services, trade, food and
beverage business, and other businesses(Sugeng, 2007). In
the era of regional autonomy, tourism sector became one of
the region’s economic activators(Purba, 2010).
This study useda descriptive method to describe the condition during conducting the study and to examine the causes
of a particular symptom(Sevilla, 1993). The study was con-
ducted between July 2010 and June 2012 in Sibolga City,
Indonesia. The respondents for the study consisted of 100 local people, 30 travelers, one tourism entrepreneur, one tourism agency official, one management agency official of small
islands, and one environmental agency official. The primary
data were collected by measurements, questionnaire and
interview. The feasibility study of natural tourism was done
through suitability analysis and the implementation policy
was analyzed through mathematical analysis to obtain the
percentage of implementation.
Description of the study area
Administration of Poncan Gadang Island
Administratively, the island is located in Pasar Belakang Village, Sibolga Kota Sub-District, Sibolga City, Indonesia (BPS,
2011). Poncan Gadang Islandis the largest of the 7 small
islands in the Gulf of Tapian Nauli, Sibolga City. Poncan
Gadang Island lies at the coordinates between1042’00” 1042’25” north latitude and between 980 45’37” - 980 46’ 12’’
east longitude. The land area of the island is approximately
10.7 hectares.
Poncan Gadang Island is suitable for tourism investment, as
it is located in the Gulf of Tapian Nauli on the cruise lines. It
also has the largest port on the west coast of Sumatra Island.
Accessibility through land, sea and air headed to Sibolga is
availabe. Transportation to the island is available by boats,
motor boats and canoes. There are tourism resources in the
island, among others are white sandy beaches, crystal clear
sea water, coral reefs around the island as well as the little
mangrove forest and sea grass and springs. Tourism in Poncan Gadang Island was established in 1984 under the name
of Poncan Marine Resort, which can be reached within 15
minutes from Sibolga City. Poncan Gadang Island is uninhabited island. The local residents are the residents of Sibolga
City with a population of around 84. 481 of which 17.50%are
unemployed(BPS, 2011).
Feasibility of nature tourism in Poncan Gadang Island
The research conducted by LP-USU (Research Centre of
University of Sumatera Utara) (2004), Sitanggang(2006) and
Lopez(2009) reported findings that Poncan Island Tower issuitable for coastal and marine tourism. The writer of the
study conducted re-research with a variety of assessment
model. The results show suitabilities. Maamena’ssuitability
analysis models(2003) is categorized very suitable, the model
of Fitriany(2004) is in very suitable category. Furthermore, the
model of Forestry(2003), Soebagio(2005),and Tuwo(2011)
show suitable category. In case of traveler assessment, 92%
of the travelers stated that the natural resources of Poncan
Gadang Island is highly potential for tourism. Tourism value
of the objects determines the number of tourists who will
visit. The results of PATA’s study showed that 59.5%of tourists
visit Asia for the reason of location of the tourist sites(Ritonga,
2011) .
Tourism facilities in Poncan Gadang Island
Poncan Marine Resort has cottages, docks, yachts, trails,
chartered boats, banana boats, jet skies, snorkeling facilities,
fishing equipment, diving equipment, restaurant, karaoke
lounges and game rooms. Moreover, the resort has five bungalows each with 20 rooms, one office building, one equipment building and one restaurant, a karaoke lounge and a
game room. Other facilities, such as, seafood restaurant,
water sport shop, souvenir shop, video game room, billiard
room, children playground, fishing tour, ferry service, airport
transfers, private car park and Nauli Miai cruise ship. Poncan
Marine Resortin Poncan Gadang island is in a network with
Wisata Indah Hotel (Sibolga City) and diving resort in the Putri Island, Central Tapanuli, facilitated with 2 bungalows and
4 gazebos(PMR, 2010).
Tourism management in Poncan Gadang Island
Results of the study reveal that 52%of the physical manage-
Volume : 3 | Issue : 9 | Sept 2013 | ISSN - 2249-555X
ment of tourism in Poncan Gadang was suitable with the
planning; 48%was suitable with organizing; and 56%was
suitable with object control. Management of tourism activities covered 52% of object management, 62% of accommodation services, 70% of restaurant services, 52% of souvenir booths, 58% of facility management, 54% of electricity
infrastructure management, 62% of water supply, 56% of
dock management, 62% of marine transportation, and 40%
of drainage management and solid waste infrastructure.
Averagely, 56.92% of tourism management was low. There
seemed to be correlation between low management and
human resources. The results indicated that 48% of employees spoke English, 40% of employees spoke other foreign
languages, 62% of employees showed friendliness, 58% of
employees was professional, and 62% of employees had
communication skills. The study also explained that 54% of
the employees had average abilities. These data showed that
low capacity of employees led to low management tourism
of Poncan Gadang Island.
Sustainable environmental management policy
Implementation of environmental policies by local government
Regional government of Sibolga City did not implement
sustainable environmental management policy for tourism
in Poncan Gadang Island. Of the 125 environmental management policies, only 9.60% of the policies had been wellimplemented by Sibolga Environmental Agency in Poncan
Gadang Island. Department of Marine, Fisheries and Animal
Husbandry of Sibolga City had implemented 10.20% out of
the 58 management policies in Poncan Gadang Island.
Low implementation of environmental policy by the government of Sibolga City indicated that the delegation of
authority fromc entral government to local government was
low(Hale, 2000), so that the local government failed to become the spearhead in tourism services(Syahputra, 2010).
The local government failed to perform its functions as a service provider and facilitator(Yudaswara, 2004). Autonomous
regional form caused the local government suffered from
disorientation in improving local people’swelfare in terms of
income rise and interest to retain power. The policies were
greater on the issue of distorting levy at high cost, and of
pursuing growth by depleting natural resources(Suparmoko,
1997). This condition indicated that policy failure or government failure led to coastal mismanagement(Fauzi, 2005a).
Implementation of environmental policies by tourism entrepreneurs
PT Sibolga Marine Resorthad implemented 39.0% out of
the 59 environmental management policies in the tourist
attractions. The percentage seemed low as the entrepreneurs operated on the basis of profit motives, not on the
basis of environmental reasons. They exploited only tourist attractions(Suparmoko, 1997, Sutiyanti, 2005). They did
not set as idea portion of profits to repair environmental
damages(Kusumastui, 2003). Their greediness intensified
when the local government implemented high cost economic policies that were compensated with excessive depletion
of natural resources(Fauzi, 2005). Tourism entrepreneursin
Bali Island oriented to mass tourism which only focuses on
the number of tourists’ visits without paying attention to the
environment and social conditions(Benjamin, 1997).
Implementation of environmental policies by travelers
Of the 11 environmental management policies for travelers,
only54.5%of them had been implemented by travelers. However, travelers received 71.40% of rights. Such high percentage were not followed by the implementation of highly abilities. According to Sutiyanti(2005) and Soemarwoto(2001) the
low implementation of environmental protection obligations
is due to the low environmental perception(Kusumastuti,
2003). In fact, the success of ecotourism is measured from the
level of tourists’awareness of the environment(Tuwo, 2011).
These data show that tourism entrepreneurs failed to imple-
ment the guidance for travelers.
Implementation of environmental policies by local communities
Localpeople had implemented only15.90% of environmental management policies in Poncan Gadang Island. Such low
percentage of the implementation was due to low empowerment conductedby the local government and tourism entrepreneurs. Low empowerment led to low capacity of local
people. Of course, the low capacity lead to low public participation in environmental management.
The low implementation of environmental protection policies
by local government of Sibolga City, tourism entrepreneurs,
tourists and local people resulted in the environmental degradation of Poncan Gadang Island. For example, the coral
reefs’covers as tourist attractions in the area and around the
island were damaged. In 2008, 25.0% of coral reefs’covers
were found in tourist attractions and only20.0%in the waters
of Poncan Gadang Island. Looking back to the year 1997,the
reefs’covers in the location of attractions were27.83%and in
the waters of Poncan Gadang Island were22.86%.
Policies to improve the welfare of local people
(1) Empowerment of local people
a. Local people empowerment by local government of
Sibolga City
The local people empowerment policies by local government of Sibolga City was low (40.30%),while the empowerment done by tourism entrepreneurs was 80%. According
to Kusumastui(2003), the difference was due to different interests between both organisations. Local government had
economy’s orientate on through maximizing the economic
benefits in the form of levies and also had capital’s orientation. Local people had no capital and gave small contribution
to levies ; local communities ultimately did not receive the
attention(Yudaswara, 2004).
b. Community empowerment by tourism entrepreneurs
Economic improvement for local people
According to the local people, 10.30% of the local economic
development policies which includes three major issues, such
as, employment in the company, marketing of local handicrafts in ecotourism and capital assistance for local people,
had been implemented. These data correlates with the results
of the study conducted by Sitanggang(2006) in SibolgaCity
which showed that the local people was difficult to be empowered because they had no business partners. The study
performed by Beyda(2000) in PandanIsland (20 km away from
Poncan Gadang Island) revealed that the local government
and tourism entrepreneurs were not concerned with the improvement of the small scale business entrepreneurs.
Social improvement of local people
According to the local people, 9.0% of the social improvement policies in terms of community involvement in tourism
planning, in the Environmental Impact Analysis (EIA)/UklUPL, and in the management of tourism had been implemented by tourism entrepreneurs of Poncan Gadang Island.
Low control and low enhancement of local people caused
tourism bring negative impacts on the social lives of the local
people(Dahuri, 1993)
Social cultural improvement
41.40% of development policies of local culture in terms of
traditional artutilization had been implemented. These data
indicated that tourism entrepreneurs had failed to promote
the high local culture for tourist attractions(Tawheed, 2009)
where as foreign tourists loved to see the performance of
local culture(Sutiyanti, 2005). The local people has a typical culture as a mix culture of ethnics groups of Batak Toba,
Karo, Angkola, Mandiling, Pakpak, Nias, Malay, Minangkabau, Aceh which finally results in coastal community(Beydha,
2000). The coastal community has specific language called
“Baiko-Baiko” language or”Munak-Munak” language. This
Volume : 3 | Issue : 9 | Sept 2013 | ISSN - 2249-555X
is a combination of various local languages​​. Moreover, the
coastal community has special art called”Sikambang”, has
typical food, such as,”Sambam Pacak” or hot and spicy sauce
and other cultures. Tourism entrepreneurs of Poncan Gadang
Island had failed to preserve the local language and culture
packaged for tourism purposes(Tawheed, 2009).
(2) The capacity of local people of Poncan Gadang Island
The low implementation of community empowerment by
the local government(40.30%) and lack of empowerment by
tourism entrepreneurs(10.30%of economic sector, 9% of social and 9% of culture) were the factors of low capacity of the
community. Local capacity in the form of public knowledge
only reached 35%. Low knowledge related to low education. Low education associated with low income (Budiartha,
1999). Low knowledge correlated with the courage to get the
rights(18%) in accordance with the legislation and concern
towards the environment of PoncanGadang Island (15%).
Khazali’s research(2002) showed that empowerment through
coaching, training and assisting had positive correlation with
people participation. When the community capacity is low,
this indicates that the empowerment of the government and
entrepreneurs has failed. In fact, low capacity of people affects low public participation(Kartasasmita, 1996).
(3). Participation of local people of Poncan Gadang Island
Participation of the local people on the environmental
management protection of PoncanGadang Island was low
(15.90%) while the public perception of environmental sustainability was high(74.50%). Public participation should
be as high as public perception(Lumbangaol, 2002). Such
difference appeared because the local people had no
chance to participate in the environmental management
activities of Poncan Gadang Island and because the tourism conditions of the island did not conducive towards the
environment(Dipokusumo, 1999). Researchof Kusumastuti(2003) which was conducted in Kepulauan seribu showed
the same results.
Low community participation correlates with their high contribution in the destruction of coral reefs. 90% of coral reefs
destruction in Poncan Gadang Island were associated with
fishing activities, 10% of the destruction were due to waste
and domestic waste. Poisoning contributed to30% of the
destruction, mining activities influenced 30%,explosives affected 15%, boat anchors gave impact to5%, bubu (fishing
device) damaged 5%and fish nets affected5% (Lopez, 2009).
Although explosives were considered illegal, those activities
helped fishermen to obtain the maximum income and they
had no other choices(Soede, 2000). In this case, the mistakes
were not completely on the fishermen (Sitanggang, 2006).
Local government and tourism entrepreneurs play a role in
the empowerment to increase community awareness and capacity that will lead to high participation.
Regional development improvement
The presence of tourism in Poncan Gadang Island has not
showed real impact on the development of Sibolga City.
This is characterized by the absence of increased number of
hotels and restaurants as well as activities that are not directly related to tourism such as handicraft industry and souvenir marketing. The number of hotel sand hotel rooms in
Sibolga City declines, in 2008 there were 28 hotels with 826
rooms, while in 2011 the number decreased to 27 hotels with
624 rooms. The number of restaurants and food stalls rose
slightly from 435 in 2008 to 165 in 2011. Similarly, handicraft
businesses, traditionall arts and cultural activities did not increase. Tourism related activities in Poncan Gadang Island
in Sibolga City have not been a major driver of the regional
(1). Natural resources of Poncan Gadang Island has suitability
for coastal and marine tourism. However, the manage-
ment has not implemented sustainable environmental
policies. The Environment Agencyof SibolgaCity that
play a role in environmental management, Department
of Marineand Fisheries of Sibolga that play a role in the
management of Poncan Gadang Island, PT. Sibolga Marine Resort as tourism entrepreneur which play a direct
role in the environmental management of the tourist attractions, tourists who enjoy the sites also obliged in environmental conservationin the island, and local people
hose lives a rerelated to natural resource conservation,
have low implementation of sustainable environmental
management policies. As a result, the environment degrades; coral reefs’ covers(for snorkeling and diving) in
Poncan Gadang Island were in better condition before
becoming tourist attractions.
(2). Tourism management of Poncan Gadang Island has not
improved economic, social, cultural welfare of the local
people. This is because the empowerment of the local
people by the government of Sibolga City is still low.
Local people empowerment by tourism entrepreneurs
in economic, social sector and local culture is also very
low. As a result, local people capacity is low in relation
to knowledge, action to get people’s rights and concern
for the environment. This very low capacity leads to low
public participation in the environmental management.
The implications, among others, are coral reefs in the waters of Poncan Gadang Island are dominantly destructed
by local people.
(3). The existence of tourismin Poncan Gadang Island has not
showed real impacts on the regional development. This
is characterized by no improvement in businesses which
are directly or indirectly related to the tourism industry.
Furthermore, number of hotels and hotel rooms declines,
number of restaurants and food stalls rises lightly, the
condition of home industry and handicraft are undeveloped.
Volume : 3 | Issue : 9 | Sept 2013 | ISSN - 2249-555X
(1). To attain the sustainable tourism management of Poncan
Gadang Island, it is required a change in orientation from
mass tourism to special interest ecotourism resource that
involves all tourism stakeholders of Poncan Gadang Island. It is therefore necessary to redesign tourism management of Poncan Gadang Island in which local people get involved and the main orientation is to preserve
rather than to use.
(2). Improving the welfare of local people (economically, socially and culturally) is a must forsmall island tourism business sustainability. Therefore, improving the welfare of
local people begins with the empowerment of local people by local government and tourism entrepreneurs in
order to increase the capacity of local people, involving
local people participation in tourism management and
making the local people a part of the tourism managers
of Poncan Gadang Island.
3). Tourism in Poncan Gadang Island will improve the development of Sibolga City if the tourism entrepreneurs
are willing to change the orientation of tourism into environmental preservation and local community welfare
tourism. Improving environmental sustainability of tourist
attractions and improving socio-cultural sustainability to
support tourism related activities will increase the satisfaction of tourists so that they would be willing to spend
a lot of money. In addition, those improvements will increase business profits, increase state revenues, maintain
the continuation of tourism business, increase prosperity
of local people and improve the regional development.
Volume : 3 | Issue : 9 | Sept 2013 | ISSN - 2249-555X
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