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Tourism Minister recognises sharp decrease in visitors

Egypt's Tourism Minister Hisham Zazou has publicly recognised a huge decrease in the numbers of tourists visiting Egypt after the military coup on 3 July.

Speaking to a talk show aired on an Egyptian TV channel aligned with the coup, Zazou said that the tourism rate had fallen by 80 per cent compared with last year.

To solve the problem of the decreasing numbers of tourists, Zazou claimed that the coup authorities are planning to increase the number of visitors from the Gulf States and Europe, because these are the places where around 90 per cent of tourists usually come from.

He said that the plan would concentrate on Russia, Britain, Germany, France and Italy.

According to the minister, the Scandinavian countries were the first to announce a travel ban on visiting Egypt and cancel flights, but they were also the first to lift the ban.

Zazou also recognised that Egypt had already lost the tourism season this year, but he insisted that authorities are doing their best to exploit the remaining part of it.

Many official reports have shown that the tourism industry completely collapsed after the military coup against the first freely elected Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi on 3 July.

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