Egypt to capitalise on real estate wealth to boost individual tourism

Ahram Online , Wednesday 25 Jan 2023

Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly instructed making the best use of modern real estate wealth in Egyptian tourist and new cities by transforming these assets into tourist units and hotel rooms to maximise individual tourism.

Alamein city
File Photo: A view of one of the neighbourhoods in new Alamein city in Egypt. Ahram.

Madbouly said this approach will benefit proprietors who can lease their units and make profit. It will also benefit the state by attracting more tourists. 
Tourism is a vital source of foreign currency for Egypt.
"Many foreign families will seek to spend their holidays in these units with more privacy," Madbouly told a cabinet meeting on Tuesday, adding the step will positively affect other commercial activities in the vicinity of these units such as restaurants, malls.
The prime minister tackled the country's efforts to support the tourism sector, overcome obstacles facing it, and double tourist numbers in the coming period, read a cabinet statement released following the meeting.
Madbouly's remarks came two days after the Minister of Tourism Ahmed Issa said before the Senate that although Egypt hopes to double tourists' numbers to 25-30 million by 2028, it can currently attract 14-15 million tourists annually.
In order to double the number, Issa added, Egypt needs to double hotel rooms, offer low-cost air travel and diversify tourist products. He stated the country has 1,200 tourist hotels and 1,300 tourist restaurants.
During Tuesday's meeting with Madbouly, Issa reviewed the country's digitisation scheme in the tourism sector, noting that 78 nationalities can obtain a tourist visa at Egyptian ports or on its e-visa portal.
He added that work is underway to digitise entrance tickets to archaeological sites and museums, noting that 1.7 million automated tickets were reserved out of a total of two million tickets sold in December 2022.
Egypt secured $10.7 billion in tourism revenue in FY 2021/2022, up from $4.9 billion in FY 2020/2021, according to the Central Bank of Egypt in October.
Egypt’s tourism sector was dealt a hard blow by the COVID-19 pandemic, with revenue dropping from $13.03 billion in 2019 to $4.1 billion in 2020.
The country received 13.1 million tourists in 2019, 3.7 million in 2020, and eight million in 2021.
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