Davos-The Ministry of Tourism is taking part in the World Economic Forum (WEF) Annual Meeting 2019 in order to discuss the ministry’s reform programme with partners, through bilateral and group meetings on the topic in order to change the narrative on Egyptian tourism, Minister of Tourism, Rania Al-Mashat informed Daily News Egypt on Monday.
“The Ministry of Tourism launched the E-trip in November 2018, which is a five pillar tourism reform programme in which we have identified the elements of structural reforms that are needed in the sector, to remain on a sustainable path,” She added.
Al-Mashat explained that 2018 was one of the very strongest years for Egyptian tourism, asserting the ministry’s aims to further achieve more business in 2019.
“In our reform programme we identified very clearly that we want to diversify the markets where we receive tourists from, and one of the key markets that we are eyeing is Asia, hence we are trying to penetrate the Asian market through more modern branding, as well as digital media, and influencers,” the minister explained.
Egypt, is a country strategically placed on both the Mediterranean and Red Seas, with incredible gorgeous sandy beaches, astonishing landscapes, warm winter climate, and, without a doubt the world’s largest collection of historical sites, temples, pyramids, and artefacts.
In 2010, Egypt attracted 14.7 million tourists. The tourism sector employed about 12% of the country’s workforce and made up 10% of its GDP. Yet, following the 2011 events, that number dropped to 10 million and continued to decrease so that by 2014, revenue for Egypt’s top tourist sites had dropped 95% from 2011.
The sector suffered from another hit in 2015, following the crash of the Russian aeroplane in the Sinai peninsula, leading to a further decrease in tourist arrivals.
However, currently, three years later, the tides have turned, as around 8.3 million tourists visited Egypt in 2017, and 2018 are expected to exceed those levels.
The tourism reform programme overall objective is that every Egyptian household would have at least one person working in the tourism sector, and in order to achieve that the ministry is trying to work on the ‘software’ and ‘hardware’ of tourism, the minister informed Daily News Egypt.
“Software being the people while the hardware being the hotels and infrastructure to support these ambitions,” She explained.