Published On: Sun, Jan 17th, 2016

Sharm el-Sheikh hotel occupancy plunges to 14 %: official

TCP : Hotel occupancy in the Red Sea resort city of Sharm el-Sheikh stood at 14 percent during the second week of January, head of South Sinai’s task force Essam Khedr told Youm7 Sunday.

Red Sea resort of Sharm el- Sheikh - Courtesy of redseahotels.com

Red Sea resort of Sharm el- Sheikh - Courtesy of redseahotels.com

This represents a more than 80 percent decline compared to any period before November 2014, Khedr said, pointing out that “the sharp decline is caused by the travel ban imposed by Russia and some other European countries to Egypt following the Russian crash of a Russian airliner on flight KGL9268 over Sinai late October.”

Following a Russian plane crash that killed 224 passengers and crew, swift decisions were taken by a number of countries including Germany, Russia, France and the UK to evacuate their tourists from the resort town, after reports that a bomb may have been the cause.

On Saturday, Sharm el-Sheikh (al-Sheikh) International Airport received 11 international flights carrying 1,245 tourists on board, according to Khedr.

Resorts at South Sinai have received 309 tourists from Eilat through Taba border land crossing, said Khedr.

Egypt’s political turmoil following the 2011 January uprising that toppled former President Hosni Mubarak has badly affected tourism sector, which has only recently started to rebound.

Egypt’s second most important source of national income after the Suez Canal provides direct and indirect employment to up to 12.6 percent of the country’s workforce.

The country’s revenues from tourism industry decreased by 15 percent in the 3rd quarter of 2015 compared to the same period last year, said tourism ministry economic advisor Adala Ragab in November.

Revenues from tourism represent 11.3 percent of Egypt’s gross domestic product (GDP.)

The Cairo Post – post editing nsnbc

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