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Sunday, 9 June 2019

Russia may resume charter flights to Egypt this year

Russia could resume charter flights to Egypt this year, the country’s industry and trade minister, Denis Manturv, said on Friday, according to a report by Sputnik Arabic. Mantruv made his comments on the sidelines of the International Economic Forum in St. Petersburg following a meeting with Trade Minister Amr Nassar the previous day.

Typical Russian bureaucratic caginess (as a means to peddle us exports) ensues: “It is difficult to say when the charter flights could resume between Egypt and Russia,” the Russian minister said. He suggested that the talks included provisions for Russia to sell us airplanes and technology. Nassar said talks with Manturv also covered the latest developments on the Russian Industrial Zone in the Suez Canal Economic Zone, according to a Trade Ministry statement (pdf).

Background: Applying pressure on tourism to serve other state goals has worked out well for the Russians, who resumed flights to Egypt in April 2018 after a three-year suspension after we bought a USD 30 bn nuclear power plant. Russian Federation Council Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Konstantin Kosachev told Egypt’s ambassador to Russia Ihab Nasr in February that direct flights from Russia to the Red Sea tourist destinations may “fully” resume in the near future.

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