TRAVEL GAZETTE – The number of tourists visiting Egypt has continued to go down in February, as an air crash last year harmfully impacted the country’s once-thriving tourism industry, Egypt’s state statistics body has said.
Egypt saw 346,500 tourists in February, down 46 percent compared to the same month last year, according to a statement issued by the Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics (CAPMAS).
West Europeans top the visitor list, making up 35.6 percent of the total arriving tourists in February, followed by Middle Easterners with 26.7 percent and East Europeans with 14.1 percent, it added.
In February this year, tourists spent a total of 1.8 million nights in the country, versus 5.6 million in February 2015, according to the CAPMAS.
Tourism in Egypt has received a heavy blow after a Russian plane crashed in Sinai in October last year, killing all 224 people on board, most of who are Russian tourists.
The accident led some countries, including Britain and Russia, to suspend their flights to Egypt’s renowned Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh over security concerns.
The North African country is striving to revive the ailing tourism industry, however, anti-government terror attacks by Islamist militants have led many countries to warn their residents of traveling to Egypt.
Since the 2011 uprising that toppled former long-time leader Hosni Mubarak, Egypt has descended into political, economic and social chaos, causing recession to its tourism industry, one of the main sources of the country’s national income and foreign currency reserves.