FILE PHOTO: An areal view shows a resort island in the Maldives December 14, 2009. REUTERS/Reinhard Krause/File Photo
CAIRO - 30 March 2020: Minister of Immigration and Expatriate Affairs Nabila Makram affirmed on Sunday that she had received calls for help by 95 Egyptians stuck in the Maldives, and that the ministry works on returning them.
The stranded Egyptians in the Maldives include honeymooners, and individuals working in the hotels of the tourist destination, but their residence got cancelled and were asked to leave.
The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) speculates that the number of international tourists will decrease by 20-30 percent in 2020, compared to the previous year, due to the coronavirus outbreak, incurring a decline in international tourism revenues by $300-450 billion. That figure constitutes around one third of the international tourism revenues standing at $1.5 trillion.
Makram clarified that the ministry is currently identifying the number of Egyptians stuck in Southeast Asia to bring them back home, revealing that the number of queries and help requests communicated by stranded Egyptians is 12,120.
Those have been mainly in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, UAE, United States, Italy, Sudan, Qatar, France, Turkey, Bali, Chad, South Africa, Mauritania, and others. Makram stated that priority is given to Egyptians who have been abroad for a temporary stay and not those residing in foreign countries.
Stranded Egyptians can fill out the following form to receive help:
They can also email or Whatsapp the ministry: Egyexpcare2020@gmail.com - 01069613755/01062437210
And, they can always head to Egypt’s embassies and consulates in the countries they are visiting.
Between March 19 and 26, EgyptAir operated 33 flights to return stranded Egyptians from different countries. Those stuck in Kuwait are flown home over six flights,of whichfive arrived in Cairo.
CAIRO - 29 March 2020: Minister of Civil Aviation Mohamed ManarEnaba communicated with Tunisair to return 37 stranded Egyptians, who had sought the Ministry of Immigration and Expatriate Affairs for help. A number of those were on business trips while others are working for UNICEF and UN organizations working in Libya so they had to head to Tunisia to get back.
Egypt suspended international flights on March 19 for 15 days but the duration was extended to another 15 days as a protective measure against coronavirus outbreak. Yet, domestic and cargo flights continue operation.
Tourists who had arrived before that date were allowed to continue their programs and leave on previously scheduled dates. On March 23, all museums and archaeological sites were shut down so travel agencies had to reschedule their programs accordingly.
Red Sea hotels and resorts were instructed to quarantine workers for 14 days starting the check-out date of the last tourist. In parallel, all tourism establishments would be sterilized during the aviation suspension.