MADRID, 30 November 2016: Both the World Travel & Tourism Council and the World Tourism Organisation have called on the UK government to lift the current ban on UK-based airlines flying to Sharm el Sheikh in Egypt.
In a letter to Prime Minister, Theresa May, WTTC president and CEO, David Scowsill and UNWTO secretary general, Taleb Rifai, stressed the importance of resuming operations to the Egyptian coastal resort.
Their statement claimed the current travel advisory was having a devastating impact on the country’s economy and social stability.
They said: “Travel and tourism is vital to Egypt’s economy and social peace, contributing 11% of the country’s GDP and 2.6 million in jobs in 2015.”
“The reduction of visitors has created huge employment losses. The country’s biggest concern is how the lack of employment opportunities, especially for young men and women, has instilled a desperate disposition and thus vulnerability to radicalisation or to fleeing on a refugee boat.”
Egyptian authorities claim to have adopted significant measures to step up the level of security, not only in the airport, but also in the surrounding area as well.
These improvements now meet safety standards as indicated by the UK Department for Transport. All other countries, including Germany and Russia, have allowed their airlines to start flying to Sharm el Sheikh again.
“We call on the UK government to review the advisory and allow commercial aircraft to fly to Sharm el Sheikh and thereby help restore the country’s travel and tourism sector’s GDP and employment provision,” the two associations said in their statement.