On Thursday, the new Egyptian Prime Minister Hisham Qandil, who previously served as Minister of Irrigation and Water Resources, finally announced the composition of the country’s renewed government, approved by newly elected President Mohammed Morsi. A new person took over the post of Minister of Tourism. Thus, in less than two years in the country, which is the main winter resort for Russian tourists, as many as three tourism ministers have changed (after Zuheir Garana, who was sentenced to five years for embezzlement after the revolution, tourism was headed by Monir Fakhri Abdel Nur in the transitional cabinet of ministers). However, travel market experts note that the Russian tourist flow to Egypt continues to recover, and if the new authorities do not conduct «experiments» in tourism, then in the foreseeable future the number of Russian tourists in hotels in Hurghada and hotels in Sharm El Sheikh will reach pre-revolutionary levels.
So, the post of Minister of Tourism has now been taken by Hisham Zaazua, who previously served as Deputy Minister. There is no more detailed information about the new head of the Egyptian tourism industry.
Recall that the Qandil Cabinet of Ministers is the first government formed after the first free elections in Egypt, which was won by the representative of the Islamist Muslim Brotherhood Movement Mohammed Morsi. At the same time, it is very important that the head of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces of Egypt, Marshal Hussein Tantawi, at the same time heading the Ministry of Defense, retained the post of head of the military department — this is some guarantee that Egypt at least formally remains a secular state.
Indeed, as a result of the «revolution» the country was split into two almost equal halves, which was confirmed by the recent presidential elections: Islamist Mohammed Morsi won 52% of the vote against 48%, which was won by the secular general Ahmed Shafik. Such a strong polarization of Egyptian society into two equal opposing camps gave rise to political scientists to declare the theoretical possibility of a civil war in the country. However, travel industry experts hope that in the near future, the political tension in the country, on the contrary, will subside. Moreover, tour operators are confident that the calls made by the Egyptian Islamists during the election campaign to impose a ban on alcohol in the country’s resorts, a dress code for tourists, and even separate beaches for women and men will turn out to be just empty promises. As a result, the Russian tourist flow should gradually continue to recover. The arguments for such forecasts are quite logical: tourism occupies a significant place in the Egyptian economy, and even inveterate religious fanatics will not risk cutting the branch on which the whole country sits. However, religion is irrational matter, therefore the actions of religious people do not always obey logic.
However, the Russian tourist flow really continued to grow. The main thing, experts say, is that the new authorities do not interfere with business “It is impossible to say anything definite about the new minister so far. However, the good news is that he is not a new person in tourism, and understands the problems of the industry, tk. worked in the team of the past minister, being his assistant. As for the possible steps of the new ministry, the main thing is that the state does not experiment in tourism. Now Egyptian tourism more than ever needs stability in order to recover, «said Sergey Zalivin, deputy director of the Egyptian host of the travel company ALS-tour, to the TURPROM information group. At the same time, according to the expert, the Russian tourist flow has recently shown good results: there are a lot of Russian tourists, while some of the hotels are already working in fact only for the Russian market. “However, Egypt as a summer destination is more popular not among Russians, but among tourists from Eastern Europe — from Poland, Slovakia, Serbia. Ours will reorient to Egypt closer to October. Nevertheless, the demand for Sharm El Sheikh among Europeans is now beginning to recover — the British market has gone up the hill, the Italian segment of tourist traffic is seriously recovering. Therefore, we really need stability, ”the expert added.
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