Manpower Ministry’s Emergency Fund grants allowance to tourism workers: ministry official

Abdel Razek Al-Shuwekhi
4 Min Read
New training programme seeks 15% return in tourism labour in one year. (AFP Photo)

The Ministry of Manpower said it is willing to pay the basic salaries for employment in hotels and companies fighting closure or incurring heavy losses in the current financial year through its emergency fund, so that they can keep their trained staff, according to an official at the Ministry of Manpower.

He added that a letter was sent to the Egyptian Federation of Tourism Chambers to inform companies and hotels wishing to obtain allowances for their workers, provided that they incurred losses during the last financial year.

The letter includes a number of requirements, mainly a photocopy of the latest financial statements approved by the company and its accountant whether in the form of annual financial statements until 31 December 2016 or other financial statements, as well as a list of the employees recorded on CD.

It pointed out that the allowances will be delivered to the company itself to pay the wages of affected workers, provided that the financial manager of the company should pledge to use these funds only in paying wages to maintain this legal employment.

The emergency fund requires obtaining an authorisation from the company or the hotel that they received the cheque after having the approval of various tourism chambers belonging to the Egyptian Federation of Tourism Chambers.

The federation shall also ensure that the company or the hotel meets conditions required to be granted the allowances, as well as informing the fund with all data of these establishments. It will exclude the companies whose financial statements show that they make profit.

According to an official at the Ministry of Manpower, the tourism establishments that do not pay their dues to the fund and those that have filed lawsuits against the fund will not receive the allowances unless they withdraw their lawsuits.

The number of direct workers in the tourism sector before 25 January 2011 reached 1.8-2 million workers, of which there were more than 900,000 workers in hotels and about 500,000 in tourist restaurants, and the rest is distributed to tourism companies and diving centers.

About 70% of tourism employment was dismissed in the last six years as a result of the decline in tourist inflows to Egypt, affecting hotels’ ability to provide quality services to guests.

The official said that the tourism sector faces a huge crisis in the current period and it can get worse in the future unless the sector dealt with this disaster, especially considering that the country aims to recover this sector, as it is an important source of foreign currency.

He added that the training programmes for tourist employment during the last two years have been stalled due to the lack of funding, whether from the ministry or international donors. The Red Sea governorate has the largest number of hotels, followed by South Sinai, which experienced the highest layoffs over the past six years, in addition to more than 280 floating hotels in Aswan and Luxor that shut down and laid off their employees.

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