Cairo, Sep 28 (IANS) Some 4.9 million tourists visited Egypt in the first six months of 2022, an increase of 85.4 per cent compared to 2.6 million travellers in the same period of 2021, it was announced.
Marking World Tourism Day, the Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics (CAPMAS) announced on Tuesday that "eight million tourists visited Egypt in 2021, a 117.5-per cent increase compared to 3.7 million tourists in 2020", reports Xinhua news agency.
Meanwhile, hotel occupancy during the first half of 2022 was 52.6 million nights, a 63.6 per cent increase compared to 32.2 million nights in the first half of 2021, it said.
"Rise in numbers of tourists visiting Egypt in 2021 and the first half of 2022 is a good indication of recovery after the COVID-19 that caused a sharp decline in numbers due to the policies of the lockdown imposed worldwide," said Ashraf al-Sahah, member of Egyptian Tourism Federation.
In 2019, tourism revenues hit a record high with $13.03 billion with the number of tourists reaching 13.1 million.
Also on Tuesday, Minister of Tourism and Antiquities Ahmed Issa said that the country aims at increasing the number of foreign tourists by 25 to 30 per cent annually and boosting its revenues.
"The tourism industry is one of the main pillars of the national economy, and it is linked with many complimentary industries and contributes to providing job opportunities directly and indirectly," he said at an event at the Egyptian Museum in Tahrir Square, Cairo.
The Tourism Ministry plans to improve the quality of the tourism experience of every foreign tourist coming to Egypt, the investment environment in hotels and shopping malls, as well as the quality of services provided to tourists whether in airports, streets, or taxis, according to Issa.
He added that his Ministry will coordinate with the aviation ministry to increase the number of planes and the capacity of airports.
On Tuesday, most museums and archaeological sites, including the Giza Pyramids, were free for visitors to mark the day.
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