Although the 2006 war in Lebanon has had no immediate effects upon the Israeli economy, visitors to Israel in 2006 have amounted to 500.000 less than in 2005. This has cost the state an estimated $1 billion.
This loss is certainly significant yet other nations of the Middle East have experienced similar negative effects of the war. In Jordan, for example, the number of tourists has also been decreased. The ancient city of Petra welcomed just 16.000 last year, compared to 32.000 in 2005.
Since the start of the conflict, the Lebanese are thought to have lost around $2 billion in revenue from tourists. The country now clings to the hope that a 15.000 strong UN force can put it back onto the tourist map, simultaneously revitalizing Lebanon. However, leading figures in the Lebanese tourist board believe that Lebanon now requires stability, something which takes time to acquire.
Although religious festivals such as Eid al-fitr of October 2006 have gone some way towards repairing some of the damage of 2006, most admit that there is still a very long road to recovery.
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