More than 90% of the inbound visitors in Egypt are Beach tourists, according to a recent study issued by the Egyptian Center for Strategic Studies (ECSS), entitled “Sustainable development: the role of the blue economy in promoting sustainable development”.
The study said that Egypt has attractive beach activities, in addition to yachting, diving, and fishing activities. It continued that the tourism sector contributes about 11.9% of Egypt’s gross domestic product (GDP), and absorbs about 12.6% of the total employment. In addition Egypt`s tourism sector contributes to about 21% of the total non-commodity exports, and 19.3% of foreign exchange earnings, mentioning the sector growth rate reached 16.5% in 2019 before it was affected by the Corona pandemic.
The study pointed out that the state has expanded its oil extraction and exploration activities on the coasts of the Mediterranean, mentioning that the state’s efforts in this context have begun to create a suitable environment for search and exploration operations by signing border demarcation agreements between Egypt and Saudi Arabia from the eastern side, and between Egypt, Greece and Cyprus from the northern side. This was followed by the discovery of the largest gas field in the Egyptian economic waters with reserves of about 30 trillion cubic feet of gas that can be increased. This led to attracting many international companies to carry out exploration and exploration activities. In 2019, the state launched several international auctions to search for petroleum and mineral wealth. These proposals are the first of their kind regarding the natural resources of the Red Sea.
“In order to develop sustainable economic activities that are related to the blue economy, there is talk about the importance of expanding the offering of blue bonds. Similar to the green bonds that aim to finance all economic activities with a positive environmental impact, blue bonds focus only on economic activities related to the sustainable exploitation of blue economy resources,” according to the report.
“It was issued for the first time in 2018 in the Seychelles, in cooperation with the World Bank, with the aim of supporting sustainable marine projects, farms and fisheries, and has succeeded in raising $15 million from international investors. With the recent issuance of blue bonds and the fact that most of their issuances are confined to the continent of Asia, it is expected that they will have an effective impact in the countries of the Middle East region, especially the Egyptian economy, with the availability of many and diversified blue investment opportunities,” the report concluded.