Kidnapped Chinese workers in Egypt's Sinai who were released in Feb 2012 (Photo: Reuters)
Chinese President Hu Jintao has said there are no longer any travel restrictions on Chinese tourists who want to visit Egypt, Al-Ahram's Arabic-language news website quoted Egyptian presidential spokesman Yasser Ali as saying on Tuesday.
Jintao made the statements during a state visit to China by Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi, who met his Chinese counterpart in Beijing on Tuesday. It is Morsi's first state visit outside the Arab world, from which he hopes to extract badly needed Chinese investment – and tourists – to Egypt.
In February, China's foreign ministry warned Chinese companies and personnel to avoid Egypt's Sinai Peninsula after 25 Chinese workers were kidnapped by Bedouin tribesmen in the area.
The incident came only days after 29 Chinese nationals in Sudan were captured by rebels who attacked their camp in Sudan's volatile South Kordofan state, where they had been involved in a road-building project.
Sami Mahmoud, secretary to Egypt’s tourism minister, told Al-Ahram that roughly 100,000 Chinese tourists visited Egypt every year, adding that this number was expected to rise in the wake of Morsi’s Beijing visit.