Russian Minister of Transport Maksim Sokolov – Reuters/File Photo Russian Minister of Transport Maksim Sokolov – Reuters/File Photo

Direct flights between Egypt, Russia to resume early February: Sokolov

Fri, Dec. 15, 2017
CAIRO - 15 December 2017: The Egyptian-Russian direct flights would resume in the first half of February provided that no negative issues happen before then, Russian Transport Minister Maksim Sokolov told Russia 24 on Friday.

“In the first half of February, if there are no other changes and negative events, the regular air communication between Cairo and Moscow will resume," he was quoted by the news channel.

Egypt’s Minister of Aviation Sherif Fathi is visiting Moscow to discuss signing an air security agreement in preparation to the resumption of flights between the two countries. It comes after several countries and international aviation bodies had praised the security and safety measures adopted in the Egyptian airports following the Russian plane disaster in October 2015.

The Airbus A321, operated by Metrojet, was returning Russian tourists from the Egyptian Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh to St. Petersburg when it crashed over the Sinai Peninsula and killed all 224 on board.

The Russian suspension has affected Egypt’s national economy negatively as the tourism industry, especially the Russian, represents a key source of foreign currency to the country. The industry has already been battered after the January 25, 2011 revolution that toppled former president Hosni Mubarak and the unrest that followed.

The return of Russian flights and tours could be a massive boost to tourist numbers which have reached 5.3 million tourists in 2016, compared to 14.7 million visitors in 2010.
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