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DUBAI — Egypt’s tourism industry is back on track, with total arrivals in the past 12 months up 33.3% from 2016 to 2017.
The data, published by Colliers International, was released ahead of the Arabian Travel Market 2018, set to take place this year in Dubai from April 22-25. It is the leading global event for the Middle East inbound and outbound travel industry for the last 25 years.
Egypt, in particular, will be of major interest at this year’s show, with reports of projected growth across the board. Between 2018 and 2021, arrivals from North America will increase at a compound annual growth rate of 3.9% to 318,844. Driving this growth will be the cheaper Egyptian pound as well as government incentives for charter airlines carrying passengers on international flights.
Over the same period, visitor arrivals from Africa are also expected to grow, with a compound annual growth rate of 3.8%, to more than 300,901. Arrivals from the Middle East are expected to increase by 3% at compound annual growth rates, to over 1.34 million.
In contrast, European visitors, who’ve traditionally been the key source market for Egypt, are projected to have a 1.6% compound annual growth rate. In 2017, there were 5.2 million European arrivals.
The expected resurgence in visitors from North America, Africa and the Middle East will see both leisure and corporate travel in Egypt increase over the next four years. In anticipation, Egypt signed a three-year, US$66 million contract with advertising J. Walter Thompson to create promotional campaigns for 27 source markets. Moreover, major hotel companies have confirmed development projects, including Hilton’s Waldorf Astoria, Starwood’s St Regis and Swiss brand Mövenpick.
Egypt’s tourism numbers took a major dive following the 2011 revolution, when tourist arrivals fell from 14.7 million in 2010 to 9.8 million the following year. The country took another hit in 2015 following the downing of a Russian plane in Sinai.