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Reuters: Egypt seeks new markets, boosts security as tourism drops

New markets like China, Japan and Ukraine represent a hope for Egyptian tourism after Russia and Britain halted their flights.
24.10.16 | Interesting article at Reuters

Egypt hopes to encourage tourists from new markets like China, Japan and Ukraine, a year after Russia and Britain suspended flights to the land of the Pyramids, the country's tourism minister said.

Egypt's tourism industry, a crucial source of hard currency, has struggled to rebound since a mass uprising in 2011. Conditions worsened after the suspected bombing of a Russian plane carrying 224 people from a Red Sea resort in October 2015.

The attack prompted Russia to halt all flights to Egypt and Britain to suspend flights to Sharm al-Sheikh, a resort on the Red Sea. The impact was clear. Egypt's tourism receipts halved in the 2015-16 fiscal year to $3.77 billion.

Since then, Egypt has made significant efforts to improve airport security and persuade the world it is safe, said Yehia Rashed, the country's tourism minister. It is also looking to attract tourists from countries that until now have not provided many visitors.

"We are trying to build up on some of the market sources that have potential ... The German market, Ukrainian, Chinese, Japanese ... ," Rashed said at the Reuters Middle East Investment Summit. "We have to go around and tell people, come and see Egypt with your own eyes ... we have a lot to offer."