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Billionaire Saudi prince 'to invest $800 million' in Egyptian tourism

Tourism in Egypt took a severe hit following the 2011 revolution. [Getty]

Date of publication: 7 August, 2017

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The investment would include expanding the Four Seasons resort in Sharm el-Sheikh in the southern Sinai, transforming it into 'the biggest resort in the world'.

Saudi Arabian billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal is set to invest more than $800 million in hotels in Egypt, the investment ministry in Cairo said on Monday.

In May, the Egyptian parliament adopted a new law aimed at attracting investment in the struggling economy.

Bin Talal told Egyptian Investment Minister Sahar Nasr that he would invest in hotels in several locations across Egypt.

The investment would include expanding the Four Seasons resort in Sharm el-Sheikh in the southern Sinai, transforming it into "the biggest resort in the world", the investment ministry said.

New hotels would also be built in the Mediterranean town of El-Alamein and in Madinaty east of Cairo.

The ministry said the amount of Saudi investment was "expected to surpass about $800 million", and the projects would be carried out with Egyptian real estate developer Talaat Moustafa Group.

In June, Egypt's parliament approved a controversial agreement to hand over the islands of Tiran and Sanafir  to Saudi Arabia

President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi pushed for the bill to pass following a private agreement with Saudi Arabia's King Salman al-Saud last year, who reportedly promised billions of dollars in aid and investment in return.

Tourism in Egypt, the Arab world's most populous country, took a severe hit following the 2011 revolution which overthrew longtime dictator Hosni Mubarak.

The fall in tourist numbers worsened after the Islamic State group said it planted a bomb on a Russian airliner carrying holiday makers from Sharm el-Sheikh in 2015, killing 224 people.

Last month, two German women were killed after being stabbed in an Egyptian beach resort adding to the woes for the hospitality industry.

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