Israel’s Tourism Ministry said last week that it had received 107 applications for grants to build new hotels or expand existing ones.

The ministry received 70 building permit applications, 22 building restoration applications and 15 applications by companies to implement existing building permits, the ministry said in a statement. This year’s grant budget was NIS 165 million ($50 million), according to the ministry.

Investors are “optimistic” about the rehabilitation of the country’s tourism industry in the wake of the global COVID-19 pandemic, the ministry said in a statement.

According to ministry figures, the coronavirus crisis disrupted growing tourism rates, which peaked in 2019 with more than 4.5 million visitors to the country. The industry’s annual contribution to the national economy in 2019 stood at around 40 billion shekels ($12 billion), according to the ministry.

“The Israel Ministry of Tourism continues to invest vast efforts in increasing incoming tourism traffic to Israel and shortening the amount of time it takes to build hotels. This will inject billions of shekels into the state coffers,” said Israeli Tourism Minister Yoel Razvozov.


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