Kiwis could be jailed for drinking alcohol in Bali under proposed Indonesia booze ban

Bali was a popular holiday spot for young people pre-pandemic.
Bali was a popular holiday spot for young people pre-pandemic. Photo credit: Getty

People who consume alcohol in popular tourist hotspot Bali could face up to three years in prison if proposed laws pass.

Indonesia's Parliament is re-debating legislation first proposed in 2015, that would ban all consumption of alcoholic drinks and bring jail terms of up to three years for offenders in Indonesia, home to the world's largest Muslim population.

The Bill seeks to ban the sale, production, distribution and consumption of all beverages containing more than one percent alcohol.

While exemptions to the proposed legislation to protect tourists are under consideration, it's unclear how these would be implemented, The Sydney Morning Herald reported.

Islamic lawmakers said in Parliament last week the country's current alcohol regulation was too wide-ranging.

"This bill aims to protect the public from negative impacts, create order and peace in society from alcoholic drinkers," said Illiza Sa'aduddin Djamal, a politician from the United Development Party.

Kiwis could be jailed for drinking alcohol in Bali under proposed Indonesia booze ban
Photo credit: Getty

"In addition, this bill is also to raise public awareness about the dangers of alcoholic beverages," she said, as reported by Indonesian news site Kompas.com.

Under the proposed laws, owners of businesses that serve alcohol could be jailed for 10 years or face a maximum fine of NZ$102,000.

Those caught consuming alcohol would also be prosecuted - facing a NZ$5000 fine and up to three years' jail.

But applying the Bill to Bali and other tourism hotspots would be "detrimental", said Nyoman Sugawa Korry, the chairman of Bali's Regional Representative Council.

"In Bali, there are also many traditional industries who depend on their livelihoods together from this industry," he said, according to Bali Canal.

A complete ban would have a devastating effect on the drinks industry and distribution businesses, and put as many as 200,000 jobs at risk, Charles Poluan, executive director of the Indonesian Malt Beverage Producers Association, told Reuters in 2015. 

However, a survey by market researcher Nielsen found that, in 2014, only 2.2 percent of Indonesians over the age of 20 had consumed alcohol in the previous 12 months.

Reuters / Newshub.