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Wednesday, 28 September 2016

Talks on restoring Russian flights ongoing

TALKS ON RUSSIA FLIGHTS ARE ONGOING: An agreement that would see direct flights from Russia gradually restored will include provisions on security measures that Egypt must guarantee, said Civil Aviation Minister Sherif Fathy according to Al Borsa. Talks on the agreement with Russian Transport Minister Maxim Sokolov, who was in yesterday Cairo to discuss the agreement, are ongoing and continue to focus on the security measures Egypt has put in place at its airports. Sokolov met with President Abdel Fattah El Sisi yesterday. Per Ittihadiya’s readout on the meeting, the minister’s visit “comes at President Putin’s directives … to discuss ways to resume Russian flights to Egypt … [Sokolov] confirmed … the Egyptian side’s positive cooperation. He added that discussions are underway on a number of points with regard to securing the airports.”

Details of the agreement were expected to be announced yesterday at a joint press conference between Sokolov and Fathy, but the conference was cancelled due to time constraints, the newspaper reports. The need for an agreement becomes even more pressing in light of data from Al Shorouk citing CAPMAS which indicated that number Russian tourists, who make up 33% of Egypt’s visitors, declined 54.9% year-on-year in 1H16. JWT, the company tasked with promoting Egypt’s tourism industry abroad, puts the drop at 98% from January to August, Al Shorouk reports.

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