General Travel News

Swine Flu Would Hit UAE Hard

EFG Hermes warned on Thursday that a swine flu pandemic would hit the UAE hard.  Because tourism is a major contributor to GDP in the UAE and Oman, confirmation of the swine flu in the region would have a significant impact. This sector is already experiencing difficulties and oil prices will be affected as people reduce their travel. 

Analysts at EFG Hermes said in a note to investors that there are still no reports of swine flu in the main MENA countries, but given the rapid spread of the disease the would not be surprised to hear of cases appearing in the coming days.  During the initial months of the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) crisis hotel occupancy declined more than 50% and tourist numbers fell between 50% and 70% in affected areas


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