Egypt’s Ministry of Tourism demanded tourism companies to deal with only authorised centres of diving and marine activities to ensure the safety of tourists.
A statement was sent to the Tourism Companies Chamber, saying that a large number of companies have been dealing with tourist services offices rather than with authorised diving centres the last period, which threatens the safety and security of tourists.
An official at the Ministry of Tourism said that diving is considered one of the best tourist activities in Egypt, warning that accidents in this field would harm Egypt’s international reputation as a safe tourist destination.
He pointed out that the recent period witnessed an increase in the tourist flow coming from Germany and Central and Eastern Europe, which requires maintaining Egypt’s international reputation in diving tourism, especially in light of the current conditions experienced in the sector.
“A large number of the authorised diving centres have been closed in the recent period, forcing tourist companies to deal with tourist offices that provide diving and snorkeling activities,” a tourism company owner said.
He pointed out that the recent period witnessed a remarkable growth in the demand for marine activities and diving, which requires the ministry to support closed diving centres to resume their activities, especially in the next winter season.
He added that Egypt receives the highest tourist inflows during the winter as temperatures decline sharply in Europe, expecting to receive large numbers of English tourists in the next season in case the travel ban by the British authorities was lifted.
Britain has banned its citizens from travelling to Sharm El-Sheikh in early November 2015 after the Russian plane crash in northern Sinai.
The British tourists visiting Egypt in 2015 reached 1 million tourists, according to an official in the ministry of tourism, adding that the last year witnessed a decline of more than 60% due to the travel ban to Egypt.
The tourism traffic to Egypt declined last year to 5.3 million tourists compared to 9.3 million last year, a decrease of 40% due to the travel ban imposed by the Russian and British authorities on Sharm El-Sheikh.