CAIRO: EgyptAir will begin flying between Cairo and Istanbul three times a day from July 2, 2021.

The airline said in a statement it will operate 21 direct flights between the two cities each week using an Airbus A320 Neo aircraft with 16 seats in business class and 126 seats in economy class.

Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry said a few days ago that there is still no date for the resumption of exploratory talks with Turkey over the restoration of ties between the two countries.

Last March, Ankara began steps to restore relations with Egypt, and in May a Turkish delegation headed by Deputy Foreign Minister Sedat Onal made the first visit of its kind since 2013 to hold talks with Egyptian officials, including Deputy Foreign Minister Hamdi Sanad Loza.

The increased connection is part of Egypt’s plan to revive its tourism sector after the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Officials have forecast that tourism will generate $6 billion in 2021/2022.

This week, Egypt outlined a draft media strategy designed to help boost tourism in the country. Khaled El-Anany, the minister of tourism and antiquities, said on Tuesday the strategy is a prelude to the launch of a three-year international promotional campaign for Egyptian tourism, starting at the end of 2021.

Saudi Arabia sent the highest number of tourists to Egypt in June, followed by Kuwait, the UAE, Jordan and Iraq.

El-Anany added that many tourism companies and hotels are seeking to increase their capacity rates to 70 percent.

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