Exhibition of classic cars in Egypt

CAIRO — The Downtown Cairo Classic Car Show recently organized by the Automobile and Touring Club of Egypt sets off broad interaction on social networks.

Egyptian Minister of Tourism and Antiquities Khaled al-Anani participated in the March 19 opening of the Uptown Cairo classic car show, along with several ministers, civil servants, public figures and ambassadors to Egypt.

In a March 19 declaration posted on its Facebook page, the Egyptian Cabinet said, “This annual event is one of the classic car activities and events that the Automobile and Touring Club of Egypt regularly organizes. The event brings together in one place the most magnificent cars, considered one of the rare historical icons.

According to the release, the event showcased more than 80 classic and rare cars.

(Image courtesy of the Egyptian Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities)

According to the website of the Automobile and Touring Club of Egypt, the club, established in 1905, is among the oldest and main automobile clubs in the world. Its activities were interrupted due to the First World War, before resuming them in 1924, with the approval of King Fouad. The first motor show was held in Egypt in 1927.

Egyptian club officials and tourism experts who spoke to Al-Monitor said the classic car events are organized by enthusiasts who like to see vintage cars and learn about their history. The event organizers hope the event will attract tourists amidst the hard situation of the Egyptian tourism sector due to the Russian war against Ukraine.

Chairman of the board of directors of the Automobile and Touring Club of Egypt, Ali Issa, told Al-Monitor: “Classic cars around the world always attract attention and give historic and aesthetic color to old models. of cars. In the Automobile Club we have a showroom for vintage cars. The club also has members in Egypt who own a large number of rare and old classic cars. For this reason, we organize several events every year to display vintage cars so that followers know their history.

He said: “Sixty people with 80 classic cars participated in the event organized by the Automobile and Touring Club of Egypt, and around 2,000 people – Egyptian and foreign – flocked to the event.”

(Image courtesy of the Egyptian Automobile Club)

Issa noted, “This event is the result of joint cooperation between a number of Egyptian government agencies that contributed to its implementation, led by the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities, which played a big role. The show was also attended by Anani and his deputy, Ghada Shalaby.

He added: “This event is part of efforts to attract tourism, which is the objective behind its organization. When these events take place around the world, many tourists flock to attend, especially those who want to see classic and vintage cars.

Wael Abdel Jalil, deputy director of the Automobile and Touring Club of Egypt who participated in the event, told Al-Monitor by phone: “This event takes place every year, but it was canceled in the past two years due to the coronavirus pandemic.

He said: “This year’s event was held under the auspices of the Egyptian Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities, and all members, including public figures, of the Chamber of Classic and Historic Cars of Automobile and Touring Club of Egypt who are the owners of vintage cars participated in. Cars featured at the event included the former President’s car Anwar Sadatthe artist’s car Naguib al-Rihani and the cars of King Senoussi and King Farouk. This collection is considered to include the best cars in Egypt.

Abdel Jalil added: “This year’s event included a convoy of 25 classic cars from the old days and Mercedes and Rolls-Royce brands which were displayed on one of the streets of Cairo. Also some recreational and artistic activities children’s activities took place during the show to make the event appealing to all ages. Its main objective was to publicize classic cars to attract tourists to the country.

(Image courtesy of the Egyptian Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities)

Ahmed al-Khadem, a tourism expert and former head of the Egyptian Tourism Authority, told Al-Monitor by phone: “These events have a very positive impact on the revitalization of tourism as they show an unfamiliar image of the Egypt, which can organize other events. than those relating to antiquities. Classic cars have millions of enthusiasts all over the world and there is no country without car clubs. members of these clubs always follow automotive activities and events.

He noted: “The motor show shows that Egypt is interested in preserving all old collectibles, even if they are not antiques, because these events give a sense of security, stability and love for aesthetic beauty. When the foreign media talk about it, they attract foreigners to visit Egypt because they discover something new about the country and its history, especially in light of the difficult circumstances that the tourism sector is currently suffering”, in reference to the repercussions of the Russian war against Ukraine.

He explained: “Automobile clubs help enthusiasts maintain vintage cars in good condition and show the events that these cars have witnessed in the past, while giving information about their former owners.”

Khadem added, “In general, the various automobile activities are a means of attracting tourists, attracting the interest of many people around the world.”

On March 15, Anani hold a meeting with Issa to discuss ways of cooperation regarding motor sports activities which are closely related to tourist activity and constitute an element of tourist attractions, according to a statement from the ministry.

According to a declaration by the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities, “Both parties have agreed to consider a number of activities in this area [without specifying the nature of these activities]which would put Egypt on the motorsport tourism map.

Issa concluded: “The meeting held with Anani discussed ways to plan tourism activities with different car races across Egypt and establish car racing tracks in tourist places such as Sharm el- Sheikh, or in new cities like El-Alamein or the new administrative capital, because these competitions are very profitable for tourism and create a commercial buzz in the cities where they take place.

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