Egypt’s tourism ministry to facilitate visas for Arab Gulf residents and Maghreb citizens

Dalia Farouq , Monday 12 Jun 2017

Tourists walk at the walking area of Naama bay in the Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh, (File photo)

Egypt will facilitate visa and entry procedures to Gulf residents accompanying tourists from the Arab Cooperation Council countries visiting the country, Tourism Minister Yehya Rashid told the press on Monday.

Tourist visas will also be granted at airports and ports to citizens with a Gulf residency from India, Pakistan, Indonesia, Philippines, and Sri Lanka.

These facilitated procedures will apply to Gulf residents with a residency of at least six months or more.

Facilitated visa procedures will also be granted to Citizens from the Maghreb region, the minister added.

The move, according to Rashed, aims to increase tourism to the country.

Egypt plans to attract 12 million tourists until end of 2017 through planning increased routes for national carrier EgyptAir, Rashid said in an interview with Reuters last year.

Egypt's tourism industry suffered acutely after a Russian passenger jet crashed in Sinai in October 2015, killing all 224 people on board, mostly holidaymakers.

However, the country saw a 51 percent rise in number of tourists visiting Egypt during the first quarter of 2017 compared to the same period last year, an official source at the tourism ministry told Ahram Online earlier this week.

Germany topped the list of visiting tourists during the three first months of 2017, followed by Ukraine, Saudi Arabia, China and the United Kingdom, said the source, who gave no figures and asked to remain anonymous. 

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