Tourism is one of the fastest growing sectors in Uganda that earned the country over USD$1.6 billion in 2018 compared to USD$1.45 in 2017 which accounted for 7.7% of the national Gross Domestic Product(GDP).
With the COVID-19 pandemic, the country received 512,945 tourists in 2021. In the aftermath, the Ugandan government and tourism industry players have embarked on investing heavily in the sector’s recovery.
Uganda Tourism Board (UTB) is a statutory organisation mandated to promote and market Uganda domestically, across the region and internationally. It is also mandated to promote quality assurance in tourists facilities through training, grading and classification as well as promoting tourism investment, support and act as liaison for the private sector in tourism development.
UTB has a goal of increasing the contribution of tourism earnings and GDP; enhance Uganda’s competitiveness as an international tourism destination; and increase Uganda’s share of Africa’s and World tourism market.
After unveiling the new Destination brand for Uganda in the Middle East, UTB launched the brand in Southern Africa where it showcased the new Destination brand “Explore Uganda, The Pearl of Africa.”
Destination Uganda at the World Travel Market (WTM) Africa 2022, was also attended by Uganda Airlines and the tourism private sector which showcased the country’s connectivity, tourism products and services.
Over 6,000 travel industry professionals attended the expo to gain insights into the continent’s tourism offers. WTM Africa also offered opportunities for travel representatives to create quality personal and business contacts with customers, with highlights including Hosted Buyers, Buyers Club Members, media representatives, networking meetings and evening events.
The newly unveiled #ExploreUganda destination brand, was on full display at this year’s World Travel Market Africa event that brought together leading travel industry players from around the world.
“Explore Uganda, the Pearl of Africa, is simply an invitation to the world, to rediscover the beauty of the Pearl. We are asking those who visit our country to immerse themselves in its unique experiences and attractions hence our call,” UTB Chief Executive Officer Lilly Ajarova said.
She also reviewed that Uganda’s refreshed destination brand identity will increase arrivals in the destination as the global travel industry recovers from the Covid-19 pandemic. Ajarova further noted that the Pearl of Africa has uniquely mesmerizing experiences catering to the needs of diverse visitors with its endemic and endangered flora and fauna.
Uganda boasts of unique natural, cultural and historical attractions in the world. For example, 54% of the Mountain gorillas in the world are found in Uganda, plus the pleasant all-year round weather, unique scenery punctuated by snow-capped mountains, beautiful lakes, rivers among others.