The Observer reports that the US government has donated Shs 12 billion (approximately $6.5 million) to Uganda, to be managed by the Sustainable Tourism in the Albertine Rift (STAR) programme. The Global Sustainable Tourism Alliance (GSTA) will also donate a further $6.5 million in items and activities to promote sustainable tourism in attractive destinations and national parks in Uganda.
GSTA Specialist Communication Strategist, Joseph Papania, explained the importance of collaboration in improving Uganda’s fledgling tourism industry, stating: “We want to promote sustainable tourism (exploiting tourist areas and still preserve them for future generations). But we are not seated on a gold mine. No one can do it alone.”
Flora and fauna are the key focus of sustainable tourism initiatives in Uganda, specifically the nation’s Endangered Mountain Gorillas, which account for half of the world’s entire gorilla population. Conserved Tourism Centers such as Budongo Forest, Bwindi Impenetrable, Mgahinga Gorilla National Parks, Murchison Falls National Park, Rwenzori Mountains National Park and Queen Elizabeth National Park to mention a few, are all set to receive funding to improve accommodation facilities, equipment and transport networks, and to recruit experienced game rangers.
A stronger focus on tourism could prove highly beneficial to Uganda’s economy, following similar examples of tourism strategies improving conditions in other nations across Africa, including Kenya and Rwanda – the latter of which received the highest honors at the recent international exhibitions held in Germany.
Safari Uganda consultant