Uganda’s tourism has reached the top list of foreign exchange earners according to the (UWA) Uganda Wildlife Authority.
Reports from the Uganda wildlife Authority indicates that Uganda’s tourism in the year 2013 contributed to about 7.9% to Uganda’s GDP which is about 5.5 trillion which is a very high improvement as compared to previous years, this is as a result of the very many travelers who droop in the country to enjoy watching Uganda’s tourist attraction majorly the rare mountain gorillas which is the leading Uganda’s tourist attraction. The Uganda wildlife Authority Mr. Andrew Seguya added that the tourism sector has contributed employment to more than 500,000 people in the county; right from tour operators, to the ranger guides in all Uganda’s national parks and reserves some thing which has curbed on unemployment rate. He also added that the return on investment is high and it shows that tourism could create more revenue with more investment in the coming years. Mr. Seguya said all these when inaugurating the tourism master plan 2014-2024 which is a collection of the strategies and plans geared towards transforming the tourism sector.
The plan among other products is looking for harnessing cultural tourism to create more insight about the Uganda’s history, dressing code, language and many more heritage sites. Religious tourism like the Namugongo shrine, Bahi temple and many other religious sites, a plan is also on seeking to harness adventure tourism and also to communicate the product being developed to intending tourist and construction of better infrastructure most especially in the areas where these products are. Skilling Ugandan hoteliers and guides and also protecting Uganda’s image locally and globally all these are planed to contribute to the growth of the tourism sector in the nest years. He also added that the neighboring counties like Kenya, Rwanda and Tanzania have invested more in marketing so we also have to create an impression that Uganda is worth visiting. The minister for tourism Dr. Maria Mutagamba when adding on Seguya’s words said that the plan is now in place to improve on Uganda’s tourism sector and contribute to the transformation of the economy through the government, private sector and donors to invest more in the sector.
UNDP representative Mr. Onesmus Muhwezi during his speech said that tourism is one of the fastest and growing sectors of the economy globally and now contributing a highest percentage on Uganda’s GDP. He also added that Uganda’s foreign exchange earnings has been dominated fish and coffee as the top foreign exchange earner Currently, foreign exchange earnings have been relegated to number two behind tourism. The leisure and holiday makers, who were among the highest spenders had increased from 9% to 16% within last year.