HomeAlgeriaThe last Mediterranean country, closed to tourists for decades, is preparing to...

The last Mediterranean country, closed to tourists for decades, is preparing to open

The last Mediterranean country, which has been closed to tourists for decades, is preparing to open its borders to tourists: Algeria has decided to open its borders to tourists. According to the Arab press, according to a document of the Ministry of Interior of Algeria, the country plans to facilitate access for foreign tourists, and in particular, to start issuing tourist visas upon arrival instead of the rather complicated procedure of obtaining an Algerian visa through embassies.

At the same time, the Arab media add that the decision to open the borders of Algeria for tourism has already come into force – although only for the southern regions of the country, covering the Sahara desert. It is still difficult to reach the coast of the Mediterranean Sea and visit the Atlas Mountains or the ancient capital of Algeria. However, in any case, for the time being, tourists must book tickets through officially approved travel agencies operating in Algeria and will be accompanied by a police escort.

Still, the move is a step forward for a country that never aspired to become a major tourist destination like neighboring countries such as Morocco, Tunisia, and Egypt. “Praise be to God! We are satisfied with this decision, which will certainly positively impact the tourism sector and the country,” local media quoted Mohamed Amin Burragem, president of the National Association of Travel Agencies of Algeria, as saying.

Also cited are the following figures: Algeria’s tourism sector accounts for only 1.5% of GDP compared to Tunisia’s 14%. The country also lags in terms of hotel infrastructure: by the end of 2020, there were only 127,000 places in hotels, while in neighboring tiny Tunisia there were more than 230,000 of them. This, by the way, leads to the fact that Algerians themselves often go to this nearby place to rest. the country

As a result, the Algerian government is calling on foreign investors to finance and build tourist complexes. In particular, an agreement has already been signed between the Qatari Retaj Hotels and Hospitality and the Algerian state-owned HTT. However, experts doubt that the “transformation” of Algeria into a tourist destination and its opening will go smoothly.

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