Sunday, 4 July 2021

More tourists are trickling in this year

Egypt’s tourism revenues reached USD 3.5-4 bn in 1H2021, Deputy Tourism Minister Ghada Shalaby told Reuters. This is up from USD 2.6 bn in 1H2020, according to Egypt’s FY2019-2020 balance of payments (pdf). Meanwhile, some 3.5 mn tourists visited the country from January to June. She notes that each tourist spent on average USD 95 per night.

This would mean that June saw 1.5 mn tourists visit the country as 2 mn tourists made their way to Egypt in the first five months of 2021, according to previous statements by Shalaby.

Things could look up soon: Egypt is expecting a 45-60% y-o-y increase in incoming tourists in the “next period,” without specifying what this timeframe may be. The ministry is targeting tourism revenues between USD 6 bn and USD 9 bn by the end of 2021.

Revenues were down 70% y-o-y in 2020 at USD 4 bn, compared to the record high of USD 13.03 bn in 2019. Prior to the pandemic, Egypt was on the path to set another record in 2020, projecting USD 15 bn in tourism receipts.

Hopefully our vaccine rollout will help: Several countries have placed warnings on travelling to Egypt on account of the pandemic, including the UK, whose red list discouraged holiday makers from visiting the Red Sea as they will be required to quarantine at their own expense for 10 days upon returning home. Saudi Arabia’s Public Health Authority also recently classified Egypt as a “very high risk” travel destination and advised visitors against travel to Egypt. However, The rollout of Made-in-Egypt Sinovac first batch last week could help push our vaccine campaign along. The government is looking to deliver 80 mn doses by the end of the year.

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