There has been a construction rate of 18% among projects implemented on lands of the General Authority for Tourism Development (GATD) since the 1990s, according to sources in the Ministry of Tourism.
The sources added that the construction rate of these projects ranges between zero and 10%, which violates the scheduled plan for implementation over the last seven years. However, these projects had many opportunities to move forward, said the sources.
They said that 167 projects have finished less than 10% of their construction work, and GATD had previously sent warnings to these companies many to increase their construction rates.
The sources pointed out that the majority of late projects did not face any obstacle hindering construction over the past five years.
An official in GATD said that these lands are state property and GATD is considered a partner in the projects until they have been completed. He added that the state has to obtain its financial rights, in compensation for the loss of other investment opportunities, tax resources, and unemployment.
He added that GATD considered granting these projects a time allowance to adjust their situation until the beginning of 2017, otherwise the authority will withdraw the lands whose construction rates are lower than what is remaining.
He noted that these projects are mostly located in regions along the Red Sea coast or South Sinai, which implies that the state should benefit from them through providing jobs and collecting taxes. GATD has achieved 66% of the total target revenues of EGP 580m during the first three quarters of the fiscal year (FY) 2015/2016.
GATD Chairperson Serag El-Din Saad said in an earlier interview that the authority aimed to increase its revenue in the next year to reach EGP 720m by collecting its financial dues from investors who benefit from land under the authority.
He said that this policy had been adopted by GATD over the past three years, as it obtains part of its financial dues while allowing concession payments without prejudice to the state.
According to Saad, we have financial dues of more than $118m, and the fines are paid in US dollars, not Egyptian pounds. This means that GATD does not tolerate its financial dues, but it also protects investors.