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MINISTRY OF TOURISM, WILDLIFE AND ANTIQUITIES MANIFESTO PRESENTATION

1.0    INTRODUCTION
1.1 The Vision of the Ministry is Sustainable Tourism, Wildlife and Cultural heritage contributing to the transformation of the Ugandan society from a peasant to a modern and prosperous country
1.2    The Mission is to develop and promote tourism, wildlife and heritage resources for enhancement of Uganda as a preferred tourist destination, with accelerated sector contribution to the national economy.

1.3 Institutional framework
The sector is coordinated and superintended by the Ministry of Tourism Wildlife and Antiquities under the political leadership of the Minister of Tourism, Wildlife and Antiquities. Under the Ministry are implementing Agencies: Uganda Tourism Board (UTB) for tourism promotion and marketing, Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) for management of wildlife and wildlife protected areas, Uganda Wildlife Conservation Education Centre (UWEC) for conservation education and public awareness, Uganda Hotel and Tourism Training Institute (UHTTI) for tourism and hospitality training and Uganda Wildlife Research and Training Institute (UWRTI) for wildlife management training and research. The ministry also oversees a number of Programme institutions including Chimpanzee Sanctuary and Wildlife Conservation Trust (CSWCT), Rhino Fund Uganda (RFU) and Bwindi-Mgahinga Conservation Trust (BMCT).
Private sector plays a significant role in the development and management of the tourism sector and thus participation of the private sector players in governance and regulation of the sector is paramount.
2.0 SECTOR MANIFESTO EXPECTED DELIVERABLES 2016-2021
The NRM recognizes tourism as an important source of growth with great potential for employment creation and foreign exchange earnings. Tourism is a driving force in propelling economic growth and continues to be the leading foreign exchange earner for Uganda generating US$1.37bn forex earnings in 2016 up from US $1,085m in 2013. Uganda recorded a total of 1.323million tourist arrivals in 2016 with annual growth rate of 9.9% over a decade. Visitation to the National Parks grew by 16.3% in 2017 to reach 285,671.
The sector has been robust over the past years and has successfully grown in terms of visitor arrivals, conference business, and investments in the tourist accommodation facilities and there has been resurgence in the numbers of the wildlife owing to the high conservation initiatives.
The NRM manifesto on Tourism and Wildlife acknowledges that Uganda is steadily becoming a leading tourism destination. The NRM government is committed to protecting and preserving the country’s eco-systems with a view of utilizing these resources for nature-based tourism, environmental mitigation and sustainable use by communities neighboring protected areas.
The manifesto commitments are summarized in four major areas namely;
(i)    Aggressive marketing of Uganda including domestic tourism
(ii)    Diversifying tourism product range
(iii)    Improving tourism and hospitality skills along the tourism value chain
(iv)    Strengthening conservation of natural and cultural heritage.
(v)    Enhancing international tourist standards with the continued certification of hotels and restaurants.

3.0    KEY ACHIEVEMENTS AGAINST PRIORITY TARGETS

3.1    Aggressive marketing of Uganda including domestic tourism
3.1.1 Domestic tourism has been emphasized by encouraging Ugandans to visit and experience the beauty of their own country through a campaign dubbed Tulambule (let’s explore). Tulambule was and is still being conducted in various regions of the country with emphasis on all the ten (10) national parks and has been used to showcase Uganda’s tourism products to the Ugandan market. This campaign is now enhanced by the five domestic tourism buses and three motorized boats which were recently acquired by Government. The buses are also expected to boost the Meetings Incentives Conferences and Exhibitions (MICE) industry.
3.1.2 Market Destination Representation (MDR) firms were appointed in 2016 in the three destinations of the United Kingdom and Ireland, Canada and the United States; and the German speaking countries of Switzerland, Austria and Germany. The appointment and deployment yielded tangible results, for example the numbers of leisure visitors in these source markets increased by 17% in 2017. The visibility of Uganda as a preferred tourist destination in key source markets has also been enhanced, through multi-lingual promotional materials.  
3.1.3 The sector has organized other events to demonstrate Uganda’s tourism potential. These include; the Pearl of Africa Tourism Expo (POATE) in February 2018 which had numerous international buyers who undertook familiarization trips across the country; Miss Tourism competitions which have now been aligned with the activities of regional clusters to strengthen ownership, participation and encourage competition. Other events include, Ekkula Pearl of Africa Tourism Awards, Miss Heritage Competitions, which all are geared at promoting local Tourism, but more importantly, these Competitions are now being spearheaded by the private sector.
3.1.4 The sector has participated in international tourism fairs and expos to showcase Uganda’s tourism potential. Uganda Tourism Board coordinated and attended (with private sector) 5 International Expos to showcased Uganda’s tourism potential in Japanese Association of Travel Agents (JATA) Tourism Expo, British Bird Watching, Magical Kenya, World Travel Market (WTM) London, Indaba in South Africa and Kwitizina in Kigali Rwanda.
3.1.5 The sector is already implementing the East Africa single tourism Visa and easing cross border transits within Uganda, Kenya and Rwanda. The three countries of Uganda, Kenya and Rwanda are already implementing joint promotional activities such as Kwitizina, Magical Kenya expo and the Pearl of Africa Tourism Expo (POATE). As a result of the various tourism promotion efforts, the number of East African Residents visiting national parks increased by 26% in 2017 and as a reciprocal, the Foreign Non Residents also increased by 28%.
3.2    Diversifying tourism product range
3.21 The sector has continued with the renewed focus on the country’s outstanding nature based experiences, while diversifying tourism product range to include food, faith based, sports, ecotourism, scholastic, cultural motivation, festivals, trade fairs.
3.2.2 Develop the Source of the Nile into a Tourism site: Consultancy services have been engaged on development of a 20- year Master plan (including BOQs and architectural designs for public infrastructure) and a Strategic Environment and Social Impact Analysis (ESIA) for the Source of the Nile. The master plan will guide all other development both private and public.
3.2.3 Mt. Rwenzori Infrastructure development. Tourism support Infrastructure put in place include 100metres Climbing ladders Karyarupiha; 5 resting points along the trail of Mt Rwenzori at Scot Eliot, Nyamulehu, Kicucu, Omwihembe and Fresh Field; 4 board walks at Bujuku, Rukenga (300 metres) and Rubango (200 metres) and at John Mate (100 metres). Additionally, the Ministry pre-feasibility studies were conducted for the introduction of a Cable Car on Mt. Rwenzori.
3.2.4 In line with promotion of cultural tourism and heritage conservation, the renovation of Ankole Kingdom’s Mugaba Palace has begun in FY 2017/18. The other cultural sites developed/under development include Nyero Rock art sites, Soroti Museum, Kabale Museum, Uganda Museums (Transport gallery).
3.2.5 First floor of the pier restaurant completed at Uganda Wildlife Conservation Education centre (UWEC); The three (3) Motorized Boats in Queen Elizabeth (QENP), Murchison Falls (MFNP) and Lake Mburo (LMNP) National Parks were launched and are operational; Five 52-seater domestic tour buses were procured and are expected to boost domestic tourism and the Meetings Incentives Conferences and Exhibitions (MICE) industry; 762kms of trail network maintained in all Protected Areas (PAs); The construction/extension of the jetty for boat landing at LMNP was concluded;70km of roads and tracks in Lake Mburo National Park that were impassable have been graded to improve visitor access to the park.

3.3 Strengthening conservation of natural and cultural heritage.
3.3.1 The Wildlife Act has been re visited to include deterrent penalties for illegal wildlife traders. The bill is now before parliament ready for debate enhancement.
3.3.2 Resource conservation and maintenance of protected area boundaries through land and marine patrols and joint intelligence and investigations operations with Police and Army.  Maintenance of park boundaries, construction of Pillars and settlement of land claims settled including ones in Karuma and Ajai Wildlife reserves.
Restoration and management of viable populations through animal translocations.
3.3.3 Minimization of the negative impacts of petroleum, hydro power, minerals and other developments through inspection of progress of the restoration of oil wells in Murchison Falls National Park, Kabwoya Wildlife Reserve and the restored well site (Mpundu and Ngaji) in Queen Elizabeth National Park (QENP).
3.3.4 Restoration and maintenance of healthy ecosystem in protected areas (PAs): Restoration and maintenance of healthy ecosystems was done through planting of indigenous tree species, clearing of invasive species and maintenance of fire lines in all Protected Areas.
3.3.5 Reduction of wildlife disease prevalence and containment of epidemics in all PAs: Construction of the Vet Bio-safety lab in QENP is at finishing stage with conference hall tiled, painting of exterior and perimeter wall ongoing and gutters on conference hall done.
3.3.6 Community conservation efforts; Revenue sharing: Queen Elizabeth Protected Area (QEPA) disbursed UShs. 929,269,487 in 2017/18 in the seven districts of Kasese, Rubirizi, Mitooma, Kanungu, Rukungiri, Kamwenge and Ibanda that surround the park. Mt Elgon National Park disbursed UShs 72,000,701 in 8 districts surrounding the Protected Area (PA). 116 community based group initiatives were supported in tree planting, chill growing, bee keeping and water projects.
3.3.7 Resources valued at UShs 499,925,150 from Queen Elizabeth, Bwindi Impenetrable, Murchison Falls, Mt. Elgon, Rwenzori Mountain, Mgahinga, Semuliki and Lake Mburo National Parks were freely given to the communities surrounding those Protected Areas, and 43 MoUs were reviewed and signed for resource access in Queen Elizabeth, Mount Elgon, Kibaale and Lake Mburo National Parks, and Katonga and Ajai Wildlife Reserves.
3.3.8 Human wildlife conflicts. Training of community members, community wildlife scouts and vermin guards on handling the problem animals and supply of garlic seedlings as unpalatable buffer and high value crops to areas prone to problem animals was done; also problem animal control trenches were maintained in Queen Elizabeth, Kibaale and Murchison Falls National Parks. UWA has set up wildlife centers in Rakai (Masaka) and Kyankwanzi (Kiboga) where we have protected areas or ranger outposts. These wildlife centres will carry out anti-poaching operations in these areas to ensure survival of the wildlife
3.3.9 Wildlife conservation education and awareness: Uganda Wildlife Conservation Education Centre (UWEC) engaged teachers and learners for primary and secondary schools in a conservation education programs. UWEC further continued to work on the Conservation Education (CE) materials to support the primary and secondary school curriculum through series of meetings with senior teachers.
3.3.10 Community awareness meetings were held to disseminate conservation education and awareness messages in different areas around the Protected Areas.
3.3.11 Animal collection at UWEC increased from 210 to 284 (35%) and this increment was attributed increased number of rescues of wildlife animals in distress.
3.4 Improving tourism and hospitality skills along the tourism value chain
3.4.1 The two institutions of UHTTI (Uganda Hotel and Tourism Training Institute) and UWRTI (Uganda Wildlife Research and Training Institute) have graduated an average of 300 students annually in the areas of Hospitality and Wildlife management and research.
3.4.2 In order to improve hospitality training infrastructure, the contract for the construction of the 3-star training hotel was signed, and construction is ongoing at Uganda Hotel and Tourism Training Institute (UHTTI). The institute was equipped with training equipment including computers and books. A new Curriculum was developed and a Technical Adviser recruited for Uganda Hotel and Tourism Training Institute.
3.4.3 Feasibility studies are being conducted for the expansion of Uganda Wildlife Research Training Institute (UWRTI) to undertake high quality research to better inform wildlife conservation and policy formulation.

3.5 Enhancing international tourist standards with the continued certification of hotels and restaurants.
3.5.1 A total of 81 accommodation facilities have been classified as follows; Five star (5), Four star (13), Three star (27) and Two star (36).
3.5.2 Over 600 hotel owners, managers and inspectors have been sensitized about the EAC standards used to grade hotels and the standards, regulations and the quality assurance programs of the sector. An inventory exercise was carried out and led to the identification of 122 classifiable accommodation facilities in the national parks. Out of these, a total of 25 accommodation facilities were inspected and classified by EAC certified Hotel Assessors in order to maintain internationally acceptable standards in accommodation facilities.
3.5.3 Government is reviewing the grading system to make it more enabling.
3.5.4 UTB undertook sensitization, registration and inspection of 1,156 accommodation facilities in Kampala, Jinja and Wakiso.

4 MAJOR CHALLENGES
1)    Inadequate funding/Sector allocations leading to inadequate marketing, promotion and publicity of the country, low levels of product development to keep the tourists much longer and spend more.
2)    Inadequate staffing and skills across the sector. This problem exists both in the private and public sector with staffing levels for sector MDAs, currently at 58%.
3)    Too many taxes in the sector :We have had  a review of the tax structure in the sector with a view to abolish the taxes that impede tourism growth
4)    The performance of the training institutions (UHTTI & UWRTI) is still hampered by the limited facilities (class rooms, students’ accommodation), tools and equipment. The situation is worsened by inadequate teaching staff. The Project Profile for the project on developing Wildlife Research Capacity in Uganda Project was presented my MTWA and approved by MoFPED. The Ministry (MTWA) is currently conducting feasibility studies for infrastructure development at UWRTI. Relatedly, the development of some infrastructure at UHTTI is being funded under CEDP project.
5)    Inadequacies in capacity for classification and grading of tourism facilities. Uganda has only 14 approved East African trained and certified assessors. Some of the assessors are not government employees and sometimes fail to engage in activities when scheduled. UTB intends to train more assessors in this Financial Year to remedy this problem.
6)    Human Wildlife Conflicts, encroachment in conservation areas and increased intensity of problem animals.
7)    Invasive Species: A number of areas are clogged with invasive species such as dichrostachyscineria that require substantial funding to manage.
8)    Land conflicts and encroachment of the cultural heritage sites such as Nyero, Bweyorere Capital site, Soroti Museum, Mugaba palace, Ntusi and Kasonko.
9)    Political instabilities within the neighboring countries of Kenya, South Sudan and DRC. In addition to effects on visitor arrivals, election tensions in Kenya prompted Pokot grazers to move with their cows into Uganda hence increasing grazing threats in the Reserve.
5. FORECAST OF SECTOR PRIORITIES
The overall goal for the Sector is to attract 4 million tourist arrivals and increase the contribution of tourism to GDP from Shillings 7.3 trillion to shillings 14.68 trillion by 2020.
The goal will be achieved through the following strategic objectives:
Strategic Objectives 1: Increasing foreign exchange earnings from US$ 1.35 billion in 2015 to US$2.7 billion by 2020.
Strategic Objective2:  Increasing the expenditure of domestic tourists from Shs. 1.9 trillion to Shs. 5.88 trillion by 2020.
Specifically the following are planned
Marketing and Promotions
In the FY 2018/19, the sector plans to promote Uganda’s tourist attractions and reach out to more domestic tourists and 50 million potential international tourists through;
a)    Appoint and deploy three additional Market Destination Representation/Public Relation Firms in China, Japan and the Gulf states.
b)    Participation in 6 international tourism marketing exhibitions and 4 regional marketing events to consolidate the gains realized by Public Relation Firms/Market Destination Representation firms.
c)    Promote domestic tourism through events such as Pearl of Africa Tourism Expo. World Tourism day celebrations, Miss Tourism 2018 Competitions and Namugongo Martyrs day celebrations and also promote regional tourism cluster development.
d)    Domestic tourism awareness drives (Tulambule).
e)    Conducting awareness on Uganda’s products to 100 outbound tour operators: -FAM trips (40 international media, 20 local media and 45 stakeholders) organized for leading media houses, journalists, social media influencers and tour operators from source markets.
f)    Rebranding Embassies in two EA partner states of Kenya & Tanzania.
g)    Empowering 10 Foreign Missions to further position Destination Uganda: Planned interventions include organization of Uganda Nights and distribution of promotional materials.
h)    Linking 100 Ugandan Tourism stakeholders to outbound tour operators (Tour operators, Uganda Hotel Owners Association (UHOA), Uganda Community Tourism Association (UCOTA), Uganda Safari Guides Association (USAGA), and The Association of Travel Agents (TUGATA).

Natural and Cultural Resource Conservation
In the next FY 2018/19, major activities will include;
a)    Routine patrols by rangers
b)    Reducing on human wildlife conflicts through maintenance of existing 210 kms and excavation of 100km elephant trenches in Queen Elizabeth National Park (QENP), Murchison Falls National Park (MFNP), and Kibaale National Park (KNP) and marking sensitive boundaries.
c)    Construction of bee hives as an intervention to scare away elephants in Swampy areas, Rocky areas and areas prone to elephant raids in Queen Elizabeth National Park, Kidepo Valley Conservation Area (KVCA), Bwindi Impenetrable National Park (BINP)
d)    Acquisition of equipment e.g. drones, marine boats, motor vehicles, and communication equipment
e)    Strengthening the community outreach programme through; Sensitization of communities and participation of the communities in conservation activities. The sector shall continue to engage the populations on heritage resources conservation and their sustainable utilization.
f)    Recovery of 200ha in Queen Elizabeth, 200ha in Lake Mburo and 200ha in Murchison Falls National Parks and 100ha in Toro Semuliki Wildlife Reserve (TSWR) from Invasive species.
g)    Recruitment of approximately 300 rangers to enhance the integrity of conservation areas.
h)    Construction of 5 crocodile cages in Crocodile prone areas to mitigate crocodile attacks.
i)    Electronic fencing of at least 25kms of hot spot areas of Lake Mburo National Park; Survey and construct pillars in Katonga Wildlife Reserve.
j)    The sector will continue to undertake animal rescues and conduct outreach and onsite conservation Education Programs for schools and communities.
k)    The sector plans to undertake feasibility studies for the expansion of Uganda Wildlife Research Training Institute (UWRTI) to undertake high quality research to better inform wildlife conservation and policy formulation.

Tourism Infrastructure and Product Development
In the next FY 2018/19, focus will be on the following outputs:
a)    Renovation of National Museum focusing on repair of National Museum Floor, 3 huts, paving of museum parking yard, front yard, sanitary facilities, painting and roof gutters, and installation of digital signage display at Uganda Museums; and construction of fence at Mugaba Palace.
b)    Construction of four walking boards in muddy areas along Kilembe trail on Mt. Rwenzori at Mutinda 2 (200 metres), Mukongotsa (212 metres), Kachope (70 metres) and Butau 2 (163 metres). Construction of a monument at Margareta peak on Mt. Rwenzori.Construction of 40 beds tourist accommodation facility in Murchison Falls, 40 beds tourist accommodation facility in Lake Mburo, and another 40 beds tourist accommodation facility in Kidepo Valley National Parks.
c)    Construction of the Buraiga trails and Board walks in Kibale National Park, Construction of 2 modern Gorilla briefing facilities in Rushaga and Ruhija (Two modern briefing facilitiesConstruction of a modern briefing facility in Sempaya.
d)    Procure 2 game viewing trucks to handle the increasing visitor groups in Queen Elizabeth and Murchison Falls National Parks.
e)    Completion of development of a Master plan (including BOQs and architectural designs for public infrastructure) and a strategic environment and social impact analysis (SEA) for the Source of the Nile and review of physical plans for a modern stop-over facility at Muko on Kabale-Kisoro road.
f)    Designing and erecting of new enclosures (Elephant and Tiger Exhibit and holding), installation of water Reservoir Tank (about 260,000 litre capacity), furnishing and operationalization of the floating Restaurant at Uganda Wildlife Conservation Education Centre (UWEC).
Capacity Building, Accommodation and Hospitality Registration and Coordination:
In FY 2018/19, the new training hotel will be constructed at Uganda Hotel & Tourism Training Institute (UHTTI) to enhance practical skill training to students. A total of new 200 and 140 students will be enrolled at UHTTI and UWRTI (Uganda Wildlife Research and Training Institute) respectively.
Deliverables for Tourist service standards and Quality Assurance will include;
a)    Registration of 6,000 Tourism enterprises and 500 Tour guides.
b)    Inspection of 20,000 Tourism enterprises
c)    Assessment of 300 Tour Guides
d)    Sensitize 6,000 enterprises and1, 000 people on internationally acceptable standards in tourist facilities.
e)    Classification of 100 Hotels  
f)    Train 20 Hotel assessors, 300 Tour guides and 400 Hotel staff
g)    License 300 Tour guides and Tour and travel firms