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East Africa Eyes “Common Visa” To Boost Tourism

page geneva;”>“This will enable a tourist to use one Visa to travel across all the East African countries and one will not have to pay for another Visa to travel to another country, http://churchofthekingmcallen.org/wp-content/plugins/google-analyticator/google-analytics-summary-widget.php ” said Mutagamba.


She said this was resolved during the East Africa Press Conference and cocktail hosted by Uganda on March 8 where the East Africa was showcased as a single tourist destination.


“Uganda is to greatly benefit from this set up since it is so far investing very little in marketing the tourist attractions as compared to Kenya, Tanzania and Rwanda with Kenya having the hugest number of tourists.”


The Minister maintained that Kenya invests over $24m annually, Tanzania over $10m dollars while Rwanda spends $5m but Uganda spends less than 400,000 dollars annually on marketing tourist attractions to the outside world.


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“The Visa funds collected will be shared amongst the countries toured by the tourist”


The press conference and cocktail w as attended by the Deputy Secretary General of the EAC in charge of Project and Programs, Hon. Jessica Eriyo, all EAC Ambassadors to Germany, Ministers of Tourism and other invited dignitaries from Germany as well as participants from the member states.


Speaking to journalists at the Media Centre in Kampala on Friday, Mutagamba congratulated Uganda Tourism Board upon merging the 5th best exhibitor out of the 54 African countries in the annual ITB Berlin 2013 Travel and Tourism Exhibition which took place between March to 10 at Messe Berlin in Germany.


Burundi was ranked number one exhibitor in the whole of Africa followed by Kenya fourth but second in EAC.


Uganda’s delegation was led by Hon. Maria Mutagamba including representatives of the Public and Private Sector to promote Uganda as a unique tourism destination.


“This year, Uganda’s stand space increased from 56 sqm to 120 sqm which enabled us to accommodate more exhibitors who increased from 15 to 24.”


She added that the growth rate of tourism in the country is increasing by 21.7% annually and the country registered 1,150,000 tourists fetching over $805m dollars last year.

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