“I haven’t seen a tourist on this beach in more than five years!” Hurrying across the white sand, his poly-blend grey suit glistening in the baking sunshine, Saeed al Kaladi extends his hand enthusiastically. “When I heard, I just had to come and see for myself.” For Mr al Kaladi, 60, the sight of foreigners on the untouched beaches of Bir Ali, where the eastern edge of Yemen’s Shabwa governorate meets the Indian Ocean, is what he’s been praying for. His engineering firm is building a 65-villa resort on the shore, and aims to finish the complex by the end of next year. All he needs now is tourists. In the midst of an ongoing conflict that has caused what the United Nations calls the world’s worst humanitarian crisis, the governorate of Shabwa in southern Yemen is enjoying a mini-boom. For much of the last decade, it was a haven for Al-Qaeda, who thrived here in the chaos of Yemen's civil war. Today, the streets of its capital, Ataq, are busy, the markets full, and new buildings are going up on every corner. “The Ataq you see today and this city last summer are two different places,” says Shabwa’s Deputy Governor Abd Rabbo Hashleh, who proudly points out how visitors encounter only a few security checkpoints these days. Eighteen months ago, he says, there were dozens of them - all run by different groups.