Washington to Cancel Egypt Travel Ban
The Egyptian tourism sector issued a sign of relief last week when the Minister of Tourism Mamdouh Al Beltagui announced that he had received US confirmation that the travel ban to Egypt will be lifted.
The Middle East Times said that the American State Department issued a travel advisory for the Middle East in early October shortly after the Israeli-Palestinian conflict took a violent turn.
Washington was worried about sympathy demonstrations in Egypt in which Americans might become the target of anti-Israel and anti-American sentiment, said the daily.
However, according to Beltagui, Egypt has proved to be secure and stable.
Tourism is one of the main sources of foreign currency for Egypt, which has been suffering from a liquidity crisis for the past two years.
Tourism in Egypt, which accounts for 11 percent of Egypt's Gross Domestic Product, suffered badly in November 1997 due Luxor attack which killed dozens of tourists.
During the 1999-2000 fiscal year, Egypt's tourism revenue was $4.3 billion and the industry employed 2.2 million Egyptians -- Albawaba.com
© 2001 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)