I was there admiring the beauty of Uganda; I couldn’t keep quiet and I said, this country is beautiful – President Jacob Zuma of South Africa

DURBAN, SOUTH AFRICA— Tourism minister Prof. Ephraim Kamuntu is leading a team of private tour operators and government agencies to Africa’s biggest travel expo, the Travel Indaba 2017 Fair at the Durban International Convention Centre in Durban, South Africa.

Uganda Tourism Board, the government agency the markets Uganda tourism, coordinated the private and public sector participation in the expo and Uganda (#UgandaIndaba2017) is found at stall DEC2A18.

Opening the Travel Indaba tourism fair on Tuesday 16 May, South Africa President H. E. Jacob Zuma gave Uganda a major marketing boost when he shared his experience on visiting Uganda.

“I was there admiring the beauty of Uganda. And I couldn’t keep quiet and I said, this country is beautiful,” he said addressing hundreds of delegates at the Indaba 2017 expo.

Zuma went on to say that he was told by a Ugandan brother that the reason Uganda is so beautiful is because God created it last. Zuma reiterated the role of tourism in developing and transforming African economies but added that Africa was still taking small share of the global travel trade.

“However, these arrivals to the continent represent only five percent of the one billion global tourists.  This indicates the immense potential for further growth in the continent’s tourism sector,” President Zuma said.

“Working together as Africans with our global partners, we can open our beautiful continent to further growth in tourism. We are determined to move Africa forward in this business.”

UTB Chief Executive Officer, Stephen Asiimwe says that President Zuma’s statement at the opening of Indaba 2017 is a great endorsement for Uganda and Africa as a whole.

“Over 7,000 delegates and tens of thousands of visitors will be going through the expo over the next three days,” Asiimwe says. “Government has laid the ground to ensure Uganda’s private tourism businesses can benefit from the invaluable networking opportunities at such events. This will lead to business engagements which eventually contribute to Uganda’s national development.”

This year’s expo has representation from 21 countries and hundreds of private businesses and tourism boards. The Uganda Tourism Board, the Kenya Tourism Board, and the Rwanda Development Board – which jointly market East Africa as a single destination with a single visa—are all at the expo.

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