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Miksi Ugandan matkailu on optimistista huonoista tulosraporteista huolimatta

•             Working with the Ministry of Health, the government developed and disseminated tourism sector Standard Operating Procedures to guide the reopening of tourism businesses.

•             Upcountry hotels and lodges were exempted from paying VAT until June 30,2021.

•             Uganda Development Bank was capitalized by the government to extend low-interest credit  to tourism businesses at half the rate offered by other private commercial lending institutions.

•             Government intensified both international and domestic campaigns to popularize tourism through “Take on The Pearl Campaign,” “Pearl of Africa Virtual Tourism Expo,” and branding of sports personalities like world record holder Joshua Cheptegei.

•             The government also engaged market destination representatives in key source markets to keep the destination afloat.

•             Through the Uganda Wildlife Authority, government intensified operations in protected areas to keep salametsästyksen, illegal wildlife trade, and trafficking under control. In addition, community engagement, control of invasive species, and human wildlife conflict was intensified to keep the tourism resource base intact.

•             Tourism development continued amidst the challenges: regional museums were finalized, the Omugabe (kings) Palace was renovated, Mt. Ruwenori infrastructure was upgraded, and “Source of the Nile“ infrastructure was improved.

•             Finally, government continued to improve infrastructure at UHTTI (Uganda Hotel & Tourism Training Institute) and at UWRTI (Uganda Wildlife Research and Training institute) with signs of recover amidst the decline based on a survey taken by the Ministry of Tourism Wildlife and Antiquities and also showing increased bookings by the first quarter of 2021 with tourists increasing from 27,542 at the end of August to 83,464 by the end of March.

In the same period, hotel occupancy increased by 10 percent from a low 20 percent by the end of December 2020 to 31 percent by the end of March 2021, and a 4-fold increase in weekly flights from 3 flights on average per week to 11 took place. Accordingly, 30 percent of tourism jobs were recovered.

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Tony Ofungi - eTN Uganda