Mohamed Amer, the CEO of El Gouna, one of the towns developed by Orascom Development, announced the town’s plan to deliver 860 new units in 2024. These units include those developed by Orascom Development as well as private developers.
Amer said that the company is currently working on completing the construction of 836 units, of which 260 units have been delivered to customers in the third quarter of 2023.
He also said that real estate sales in El Gouna increased by about 55.7% in the first nine months of 2023. “Our goal is to export real estate this year, especially to Egyptians living abroad,” he said.
He added that the town plans to expand its hotel rooms to boost its dollar revenues. He emphasized that the renovation and replacement of hotels is ongoing to upgrade all of El Gouna’s hotels. The town also aims to start the construction of about 30 new hotel rooms in 2024 at CASA COOK.
According to Orascom Development’s business results at the end of last September, El Gouna’s hotels achieved an occupancy rate of 72%, compared to 69% in the same period last year.
The percentage of foreigners who own properties in El Gouna reached 31%. However, there are some challenges in increasing the real estate exports, such as the difficulty in obtaining foreign currency if the foreigner decides to sell the property and leave with dollars.
Foreigners accounted for 81% of the total occupancy of El Gouna’s hotels in the first nine months of 2023. High occupancy rates and significant growth in the prices of hotel rooms, in both Egyptian pounds and US dollars, led to a 96.5% increase in hotel revenues to EGP 1.9bn in the first nine months of 2023. The average price of a room sold increased by 87.8% to EGP 2,840 per night, according to the business results.
“We are the only developer in the market that prices in dollars, but the law in Egypt requires sales to be made in the local currency. The government’s decision to allow foreigners to buy properties is a positive step, but the most important thing is to facilitate the process of buying and selling properties for foreigners and to enable them to transfer their money out of Egypt,” Amer said.
Regarding the launch of new phases, Amer revealed that El Gouna is about to launch the second phase of its North Bay project, which was launched about four months ago. It is a new phase that offers a peaceful life overlooking an open lagoon and connected to the sea.
“Regarding the launch of Fanadir Marina Commercial Areas, we have signed contracts for more than 80% of the shops, but we are still trying to fill any gap that exists in this sector, such as clothing stores and other sectors,” he said.
When it comes to empowering entrepreneurship, he added “We also want to position El Gouna as a hub for entrepreneurship. Hence, El Gouna Business Park is a dynamic complex for businesses and plays a key role as the commercial district of the town. Our offices are located in a strategic location there and we receive new requests from companies and banks to open branches in El Gouna Business Park.”
The total operating profits of El Gouna’s hotels increased by 139.8% to EGP 1.1bn at the end of last September, compared to the first nine months of 2022.