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Live broadcast of Egypt touristic sites worldwide to promote industry

Tourism minister announces new initiative to live-stream images of Egypt, to counter media images of instability

Dalia Farouk, Monday 26 Nov 2012
Luxor city
Tourists walk inside the Luxor Temple in Luxor city, around 650 km (404 miles) south of Cairo (Photo: Reuters)
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Egyptian officials plan to create a live, round-the-clock video broadcast of the country's main tourist areas in a project called 'Egypt Now', to help persuade tourists to visit the country, Egypt's Minister of Tourism Hisham Zaazou said on Sunday.

Once a flourishing industry, tourism in Egypt has been struggling since a popular uprising in 2011 forced former president Hosni Mubarak to step down. Ongoing instability drove tourist agents worldwide to remove Egypt from their destination lists.

"The 'Egypt Now' live broadcast will be show on the large screens in major squares in countries across the world," Zaazou told Ahram Online.

The online broadcast is expected to start by the beginning of 2013.

"The media has summarised the whole country as the single square kilometre that is Tahrir Square," Zaazou explained. "The rest of the country is safe and ready to receive visitors from all over the world."

Zazzou predicted on Sunday that a total of 11.6 million tourists would visit Egypt by the end of 2012, a 16 per cent increase over 2011, which saw some 10 million tourists.

These levels are still well below 2010 when the industry peaked at 14 million tourists.

The protests following President Morsi's recent Constitutional Declaration, and ongoing instability and violence in Sinai, have helped portray an uncertain image of Egypt to potential visitors.

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