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Uganda to spend $1.5million to boost tourism

Tourism 3
President ‪Museveni‬ recently had a boat ride along the beautiful ‪‎Kazinga Channel‬ that connects ‪ ‎Lake Edward‬ and ‪‎Lake George‬ in Queen Elizabeth Park

President Yoweri Museveni has endorsed three PR and Marketing firms to represent Uganda in the growing global tourism and travel market.

The firms PHG Consulting, Kamageo and KPRN will represent, promote and seek tourism investment on behalf of Uganda in North America, UK and Ireland, and German speaking markets at a total cost of $1.5million (Ug Shs 4.9 billion)  a year.

The overall objective of the assignment, according to a Press release from the Uganda Tourism Board (UTB), is to leverage Uganda as a prime tourism travel destination.

“This is to be achieved by providing strategic marketing, sales representation and public relations services in North America (USA and Canada), UK and Ireland; and Germany speaking Europe (Germany, Austria and Switzerland).  This is to increase tourism arrivals and length of stay in the country and overall spend.”

 

Uganda Tourism Board CEO Stephen Asiimwe believes the firms work will directly impact on development and employment in Uganda. “In 2015, the direct contribution of Travel & Tourism to GDP was UGX2,982.1bn (3.7% of GDP). This is forecast to rise by 0.7% to UGX3,002.7bn in 2016,” said Asiimwe.

Uganda parks

This contribution reflects the economic activity generated by industries such as hotels, travel agents, airlines entertainment, leisure, and transportation services.

The total contribution of Travel & Tourism to GDP (including wider effects from investment, the supply chain and induced income impacts) was UGX7,270.5bn in 2015 (9.0% of GDP) and is expected to grow by 1.4% to UGX7,372.1bn (8.6% of GDP) in 2016.

Asiimwe added that “tourism generated 464,500 jobs directly in 2015 (3.1% of total employment), while in the wider context including effects from investment, the supply chain and induced income impacts, it generated 1,173,000 jobs (7.8% of total employment).”

According to the UTB, the marketing firms were chosen after an international competitive bidding process managed and funded by the World Bank through the Competitiveness and Enterprise Development Project (CEDP), coordinated by the Private Sector Foundation Uganda (PSFU). The five-year project comprises of four major components and is being implemented by seven agencies.

Gorilla in Bwindi
Close shot of a gorrila in Bwindi, Uganda. They are one of many attractions that the country offers.

Uganda Tourism Board (UTB) is one of the beneficiary Government Agencies that has received support from World Bank. Under CEDP, the tourism sector is being supported through product planning, packaging and promotion among other components. The project will support the Government of Uganda in promoting tourism products and services to our key source markets of North America (USA and Canada), UK and Ireland; and Germany speaking Europe (Germany, Austria and Switzerland).

Under this arrangement, the Uganda Tourism Board is using part of this support to engage public relations and marketing firms to provide strategic marketing, sales representation, and public relations services in the above mentioned key source markets. The purpose is to popularize Uganda’s existing and new tourism products and services in order to increase their visibility and attract more tourists.

Museveni meets the PR team, Ugandan tourism and wildlife officials
Museveni meets the PR team, Ugandan tourism and wildlife officials

Tourism arrivals to Uganda 2007 – 2013 Source: Uganda Bureau of Statistics

Year       No. of Tourist arrivals

2007       641,743

2008       843,864

2009       817,424

2010       945,899

2011       1,151,356

2012       1,196,765

2013       1,206,334

2014       1,266,046

 

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