Dubai, United Arab Emirates (CNN) – said Egyptian Minister of Tourism Mounir Fakhri Abdel Nour, Egypt is at a crossroads, and we must reach an agreement to build a democratic civil fair, and ruled that the up tide of religious to Egypt last minute tours, last minute holidays, deals, tours to Egypt, shore excursions adding that “the pillars stronger than that interfere any official “, whatever the political or ideological trends.
The Egyptian minister, in an exclusive interview for CNN Arabic, that the continued media focus on what is going political movement in Egypt, and ignore the positives, that would harm Egyptian tourism, and confirmed that he cannot be limited reality Egyptian tourism in the movement taking place in Tahrir Square between time to time, and that different parts of Egypt, both tourist and non-tourist, “enjoy security and safety.”
He Abdel Nour regretted what happens escalation of the issue of arrest Saudi security services to counsel young Egyptian, Ahmed Gizawy, saying: “I regretted a lot of what Bader of very few of Egyptian citizens in front of the Saudi Embassy in Cairo, these events are not acceptable in form and substance, and not the position of Egyptian official, and stressed that the Egyptian-Saudi relations, government and people, deep and eternal, not shaken by such events narrow, which does not reflect what the Egyptian people harbor toward his brothers the Saudis. ”
Regarding the impact of the rise of Islamists to power on tourism in Egypt, said: “the statements issued from time to time on tourism land, and tourism’s, issued from people in places that are not responsible, so keen to be issued parliament speaker, issued a statement confirming the importance of tourism to Egypt, and the People’s Assembly its Muslim majority, which respects freedom and security of the tourists in the framework of public order. ”
He added: “Egyptian tourism sector of power and economic importance, which prevents any official Whatever affiliations hardliner religious, to take decisions harm it; tourism represents more than 11 per cent of gross domestic Egyptian, and the second source of foreign currency in the Egyptian economy, in addition to the Number of employees in this sector exceeds four million people, representing 1 out of every 6.5 of the Egyptian workforce. ”
He spoke Abdel Nour about the danger of continuing political problems in Egypt, saying: “Egypt is at a crossroads, and must reach a clear agreement, the objective of this popular movement is to build a civil state democratic and equitable, but the transition from autocracy to democracy, should pass through this stage tense, and this is what happened in all States that have gone through the same experience, such as Germany, and the countries of Eastern Europe, and Indonesia.”
The Egyptian minister added, saying: “I hope to improve choice in the next stage, and not much lengthened this period, because the economic and environmental problems and other accumulated, and the longer we become difficult to find solutions.”
Turning to the losses the tourism sector, saying: “losses great, especially since the year 2010 witnessed a boom in tourism in Egypt, and reached the number of tourists to about 14.5 million tourists, and earned financially estimated $ 12.5 billion, compared with 2011, when no more than the number of tourists 9.8 million, and achieved income of $ 8 billion only, any loss of more than $ 3.5 billion.”
As for the negative impact of such losses, he said: “Tourism industry labor-intensive, and losses affecting all sectors of the state, and harm national income, all members of the Egyptian people in different strata and levels of scientific and practical, are affected by tourism, either directly or indirectly, but I expect the return movement tourism to Egypt to normal soon, in line with the levels of tourism in 2010 and the best.”
And he pointed to a relative increase in the number of tourists this year, saying: “so do not look gloomy, the number of Arab tourists who visited Egypt during the first three months of this year, arrived to 843 thousand and 834 tourists, compared to 296 thousand and 980 tourists during the same period in 2011, an increase of 62.9 per cent, while the total number of tourist nights spent by Arab tourists in Egypt, about 7.4 million a night, compared to about 4 million a night in the first quarter of last year, an increase of 84.4 per cent.
According to Abdel Nour to the role of the media in portraying a negative picture of the tourists about the situation in Egypt, saying: “The media plays a negative role in the transfer of a wrong image of the situation in Egypt, it’s heightened focus on the political movement, social and demonstrations taking place in Egypt, and ignore the positives.”