Egypt is second most popular destination for Swedish tourists outside Europe: ambassador

Nehal Samir
3 Min Read

Swedish Ambassador to Egypt Jan Thesleff told Daily News Egypt that Egypt is the second most popular destination for Swedish tourism outside Europe.

The ambassador said that tourism is moving forward very quickly, explaining that before the first revolution in Egypt, there were 210,000 Swedish tourists every year, then from 2011 to 2013, there was a downturn in tourism.

He continued, saying that this year, there are 10 or 11 flights coming in every week, pointing out that Swedish tourists are travelling not only to Cairo, but also to Hurghada and other areas of the Red Sea coast.

“What’s interesting to note is that in the past, Swedish tourists were mostly coming in the winter season from October to April; now they come year-round, they even come in the summer,” Thesleff said.

He assured that now Egypt is a year-round destination for Swedish tourism, expecting that his country’s investments and tourism will both grow next year.

Meanwhile, a government official said on Wednesday that Egypt’s revenues from the tourism sector jumped 83.3% to reach about $2.2bn in the first quarter (Q1) of this year, according to Reuters.

The official added that the number of tourists travelling to Egypt rose by 37.1% to reach 2.383 million in the quarter.

Furthermore, the official estimated that the number of nights stayed was 23.8 million nights in Q1.

Earlier, during a press conference on the sidelines of the Arabian Travel Market exhibition that took place in Dubai last month, Egyptian Minister of Tourism Rania Al-Mashat announced that the number of tourists visiting Egypt jumped 30% during Q1 2018 compared to last year.

She added that tourism now represents 15% of the total sources of income for the national economy.

Tourism suffered a devastating blow when a Russian passenger plane crashed in Sinai in late October 2015 and all its passengers were killed.

Following the plane crash, Russia imposed a travel ban on Egypt, while Britain banned travel to Sinai. Russian flights returned to Cairo last April.

Tourism flows have improved following the Central Bank of Egypt’s decision to float the Egyptian pound in November 2016, where slashed the value of the local currency by about half and boosted the competitiveness of the sector.

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