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Tourism will be the industry suffering the most in Tunisia as a result of repeated terrorist attacks, claims strategic market research firm Euromonitor International.
The warning comes following this week’s explosion which struck a bus carrying members of the presidential guard, killing at least 13 people in the centre of Tunis.
A state of emergency was re-imposed in the country with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office warning of possible further terrorist attacks in tourist resorts.
The fear of repeat attacks led to 3,500 British tourists leaving Tunisia since the attack by a militant gunman killing 38 tourists at the resort of Sousse in June. This followed the March museum attack in Tunis.
Egypt, another North African destination hit repeatedly by terrorist attacks, is also expected to see an economic slowdown and decrease in arrivals as well as investment.
British arrivals to Tunisia declined from 423,000 in 2010 to 360,000 in 2011, the year of the Tunisian revolution. The figure then recovered, reaching 440,000 in 2014.
However, average spending by UK tourists fell from £178 million to £143 million from just 2010 to 2014, according to Euromonitor.
Egypt started the year of 2013 with high visitor numbers but then suffered a strong drop as a result of the political unrest and repeated terrorist attacks.
Since then, the country saw an average annual decline in UK visitor numbers of 18.5% from 2010 to 2014.
“No other major tourist destination regularly visited by British tourists have been that negatively impacted,” senior analyst, Kinda Chebib, said.
“Key players in the travel industry in those two countries have implemented since then some strong price-cutting in an effort to lure back tourists.
“However, in a context of general fear and risks, those strategies do not pay back, especially when it comes to British tourists and investments,” Chebib added.
“If we take the case of Morocco, there was strong growth in terms of arrivals from the UK, rising from 308,000 in 2010 to 460,000 in 2014.
“It is interesting to keep in mind that this included a 51,000 increase in arrivals in 2012, one year after the Marrakesh bombing.
“This shows that when terrorists’ attacks are not recurrent, the impact on major tourism destinations tends to be on the short-term.
“The London bombings of July 2005, killing 52 people, confirm this theory didn’t impact on the number of arrivals.
“In contrast, figures suggest that the tourism industry in countries enduring long-term conflicts, such as Egypt, will be impacted on a larger level.”
Meanwhile, Euromonitor warned that Turkish tourism will suffer from the current stand-off between the country and Russia following the shooting down of a Russian warplane above the Syrian border.
The impact of a ban on Russian travel companies sending tourists to Turkey will depend on the duration of the restrctions.
But with more than 4.5 million Russians visiting Turkey last year, the country will not make up losses from Russia even if it tries to attract tourists from other countries,
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