Development of Egyptian town to increase tourism
March 22- The development of the northern Egyptian town, Marsa Matrouh, is expected to hugely benefit the tourism industry of the country. Located near the seaside resort of Alexandria, it will accommodate1 6 per cent Egyptians and 30 million tourists.
Marsa Matrouh has 500,000 residents at the moment and received over six million tourists between June and September 2009. Reports indicate that a similar number is expected this year. The town will be developed at a cost of $4 million and includes 29 projects such as hotels and recreational areas (safaris, tours etc). One such project involves the construction of a Greek district complete with the planting of olive trees over a large area. The produce is expected to be exported. The University of California is also in the pipeline, which is expected to receive up to 3,000 students from the Middle East.
"The project will help us bring in over Dh36.7 million ($10 million) worth of investments to Egypt, and will create more than 61,000 job opportunities,” said Ahmad Hussain, Governor of Marsa Matrouh. Samy Mahmoud, Undersecretary of the International Tourism Sector in Egypt, said 12.5 million tourists came to Egypt in 2009, generating $11 million in revenues. "We currently have up to 20 million tourists from the Arab world. By 2014, Egypt is expected to receive 16 million tourists a year, generating revenue of up to $30 million. By the end of 2020, we aim to attract over 25 million tourists."
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