The Uganda Tourism Board (UTB) has launched a campaign targeting tourists from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) in a bid to expand its tourism numbers.
Addressing the media at his offices in Kampala on Thursday, Prof Ephraim Kamuntu the minister of Tourism, Wildlife and Antiquities said the travel campaign named “Experience the Pearl of Africa" that was launched in October in UAE, was the first time Uganda has created a specific travel package exclusively for the locals and residents of the gulf countries.
“Formerly our traditional markets apart from Africa were Britain, USA, and Canada by launching the campaign in these emerging markets is a plus as we move to consolidate the increase in tourist numbers and promote the sector,” Kamuntu said.
According to the Uganda Bureau of Statistics, Uganda received 1.8 million tourists in 2018, up from 1.4 million in 2017. In 2017, the 1.4 million arrivals injected about $1.4 billion into the economy. This contributed to about 10 per cent of the country's GDP.
Kamuntu added that these markets will be vital if Uganda is to attain the middle-income status, saying that the growth rates must double from the current 6.8 per cent to more than 10 per cent.
The campaign promotes destination Uganda as a premier adventure and nature holiday destination for families, groups, couples and young adults seeking memorable travel experiences for a long time.
The special promotional holiday packages include guided safaris, River Nile boat excursions, mountain gorilla treks among others.
“We are excited to showcase the very best that Uganda has to offer as a holiday destination for meaningful and sustainable travel," Kamuntu said.