The Egyptian Tourism Federation (ETF) is preparing to participate in the tourism investment forum in Dubai at the end of April, according to ETF chairman Elhamy El-Zayat.
The forum is a good opportunity to showcase Egyptian tourism products in the UAE and Gulf markets, to lift the travel movement to Egypt annually, El-Zayat said.
Former minister of tourism Hisham Zazou intended to participate in the forum with a series of projects and marketing plans to increase tourist traffic flow from the Gulf countries during the coming period.
Arab tourism represents 20% of the total influx to Egypt annually, according to the Ministry of Tourism, though it contributed less than 15% of this in the past two years.
Egypt’s share of Arab tourism still does not meet the aspirations of employees in the tourism sector who hope that Egypt receives a large share. Arab inbound tourism to Egypt must not fall to less than 3 million visitors a year in order for the industry to survive.
El-Zayat believes Arab tourists are the highest spenders among the different nationalities coming to Egypt. According to the chairman, their expenses’ rate exceeds $130 per night; they also stay for long periods in Egypt and visit approximately three times a year.
Economic Adviser to the Minister of Tourism Adla Ragab said many tourist programmes were launched for Arab tourists over the past year, especially for those from UAE and Saudi Arabia. These programmes increased the influx during the summer months by more than 20%.
The Ministry of Tourism is studying the provision of further incentives for Arab tourism during the current year. It is expected that this will increase Egypt’s share of this market as it already has the advantages of culture, geographical proximity and political rapprochement between the Gulf countries and Egypt, according to Ragab.