Baku, August 23, AZERTAC
Islamist attacks, strikes and floods kept foreign tourists away from the French capital in the first half of the year and cost the Paris region tourism industry some 750 million euros ($849.38 million) in lost revenue, officials said on Tuesday, according to Reuters.
"It's time to realise that the tourism sector is going through an industrial disaster. This is no longer the time for communication campaigns but to set up a relief plan," Frederic Valletoux, head of the Paris region tourist board said in a statement on Tuesday.
Valletoux said massive investments were needed to protect jobs in the sector and he urged Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault to quickly meet with local tourism officials.
France, which is seeking to revive its economy, depends heavily on tourism, which generates over 7 percent of national gross domestic product and over 13 percent of that of the Ile-de-France region, which includes Paris, the world's most visited city.
France's tourism industry has suffered since Islamic State gunmen killed 130 people in an attack in Paris last year. It was dealt further blows in July when a gunman drove a truck into crowds celebrating Bastille Day on July 14 in the Riviera city of Nice. Two weeks later, two men killed a priest in a small town in Normandy. Strikes against a controversial labour reform and floods in June also deterred tourists.
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