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Crisis-hit Jordan’s tourism sector eyes Russian tourists

Work under way to provide required facilities

Jordanian tourism authorities have kicked off a campaign to attract a larger number of Russian tourists, who now shun Egypt’s Sharm al-Sheikh resort following the Russian airliner crash.

Nayef al-Fayez, Jordan’s tourism minister, said that his ministry, along with other national tourism bodies, has launched a promotional campaign to lure more Russian tourists to the Kingdom, where the tourism sector has been hit hard by turmoil in the region.

Al Ghad quotes the minister as saying, “All of the indications we have, make us believe that there will be a rise in the number of Russian tourists coming to the Kingdom, especially after the Russian jetliner crash in the Sinai peninsula”.

On October 31, a Russian aircraft crashed in the Sinai Peninsula killing all 224 people on board, with reports that the plane was downed by a bomb explosion. Most of those on board were Russian tourists.

The Jordanian minister said work is underway to provide Russian tourists with all the facilities they may need when they visit the country, which is home to Petra, one of the New7Wonders of the World.

Travel agents said attracting larger number of Russian visitors requires some decisions by the government in terms of slashing taxes and cutting costs for tourists.

They noted that Russians are among the highest-spending tourists in the world, with an average spend of $7,000 to $10,000 per tour.

($1 = AED3.67, at the time of publishing)