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Pearl of Africa Tourism Expo 2017: Tourism is Everybody’s Business

Pearl of Africa Tourism Expo 2017: Tourism is Everybody’s Business

The Uganda Tourism Board (UTB) shall host the third Pearl of Africa Tourism Expo (POATE 2017) from February 17-19, 2017 at the Kololo Independence grounds in Kampala, Uganda.

Themed “Tourism is Everybody’s Business,” the main aim of hosting POATE is to create a common networking platform for industry players in the region as well as the global tourism industry.

The main event shall be a three-day exhibition themed “Family and Travel” with exhibitors representing airlines, hotel chains, lodges, restaurants, tour operators, travel agencies, and regional tourism clusters.

Exhibitor space will be available, and the youth have not been left out with the planned launch of tourism clubs in schools, quizzes, seminars, and activities such as quad biking, horse riding, a mini zoo, poetry and folklore, dance, food, and dressing. Entrance for the general public is free.

Prior to the expo starting on February 6, visitors shall be hosted to familiarization trips to various tourist attractions including rafting on the mighty Nile, the luxuriant Mabira Forest, Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary, Jane Goodal Chimpanzee Ngamba Island Sanctuary, Ssese islands Lake Mburo, Queen, Bwindi (gorilla) Impenetrable Forest, Kibale Forest, Kidepo Valley, and Murchison Falls National Parks, and in Uganda’s finest lodges and hotels.

UTB intends to bring in at least a hundred hosted buyers and media from the USA, Canada, the United Kingdom, Russia, Australia, France, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, The Netherlands, Italy, Poland, Czech Republic, Spain, Finland, Brazil, Israel, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Japan, India, UAE, Morocco, India, Malaysia, and China.

Also invited are participants from the continent including South Africa, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, Ghana, and Nigeria from the African region. On June 3, Uganda Martyrs Shrine, Namugongo, will become a magnet for thousands of pilgrims as it does every year, and the UTB Board is keen to promote faith-based tourism in the region. That is why in October, the UTB participated at the 12th AKWAABA African Travel Market 2016 exhibition in Lagos, Nigeria, aware of the potential from Africa’s economic powerhouse and main source for several pilgrims to Namugongo.

Last year, the second edition of the expo was held in October at Kampala Serena. This year, the event had to be postponed to give way for the First Africa Birding Expo which took place from November 18-20 at the botanical gardens which hosted several visitors globally from Cornel University lab, “Clement checklist” and “e-bird,” television presenters, international bloggers, and birders who also participated in Big Birding Day and familiarization trips around the country.

With such programs, the UTB Board won’t be too far from achieving its ultimate vision of “working with tourism partners to develop POATE into one of the most effective networking platforms in the East African region within the shortest time possible.”

The event is sponsored by UTB with the support of the World Bank – Competitiveness and Enterprise Development Project (CEDP).

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