Observers of the Indonesian tourist industry, tourists themselves, local expats and the large number of residents who enjoy imbibing alcohol, and I am one of their number, have been highly critical of the current desperate dearth of legitimate booze
because the government has raised the tax on booze by a hefty percentage before reorganising the supply network.
I have recently received an email emanating from the manager of a Jakarta drinking establishment.
Read and despair, or stick to local beers.The Govt. may drop the 300% extra tax on booze & food when some Westerner dies from drinking bootleg booze, labeled as genuine product, due to bad tourist publicity.There is a heap of copy booze around now in Jakarta and everywhere. All bars and clubs tell patrons that they cannot guarantee that the booze they sell is genuine. It is sold to us by distributors as the real thing, but bar owner friends of mine have experienced having Jack Daniels that tasted just a “tiny bit funny” but smelt right, etc., etc, but next morning, they were vomiting, with massive headaches, etc., something which had never happened before in years of drinking Jack Daniels.
The big worry is not knowing what chemicals these homemade booze boys put in to make it taste and smell like the real thing! We will never know until some bule (westerner) dies due to this black market booze that is now estimated to be more than 50% of the liquor sold in Indonesia.This just goes to show how stupid the Indonesian Govt. is, regardless of who is in power! They put up tax 300%, so every crook in the country starts making bootleg booze, sells it for same price as the real thing so nobody get suspicious; they make a fortune and the Govt. loses out on not only the 300% tax, but the normal duty and tax on wine and spirits, tax from restaurants, bars, clubs, etc., through lost revenue and sales.
It is just lucky the Indo Govt. has 100 feet, because over the past few years, I have seen them shoot themselves in the foot at least 99 other times through their stupidity!!Enjoy your next drink….whatever it is???? Nobody will ever know…….
And lest you think that this is scaremongering, consider this travel advisory
. It may be a couple of years old but is remarkably prescient.