Nairobi — Senior officers from Kenya and Uganda are assembly in Diani, Kwale County, to discover partnerships geared at selling tourism within the area.
The 2nd Uganda-Kenya Coast Tourism Convention which kicked off on Monday may also discover strategic engagements between the 2 international locations together with Uganda Airways’ bid to advertise the Entebbe-Mombasa route.
Uganda’s Minister of State for International Affairs, in Cost of Regional Cooperation Mulimba John and his Tourism, Wildlife and Antiquities counterpart Bahinduka Mugarra led a delegation of over 200 Ugandan personal and public sector gamers to the convention.
“On the first convention, our Minister of State really helpful that this be an annual occasion, so we had no alternative. For us, we thought we have been organizing a one-off occasion, however the minister, in his knowledge, noticed a really large alternative,” Ambassador Paul Mukumbya, the Consul Basic for Uganda’s Mombasa Consulate, noticed.
Ambassador Mukumbya emphasised that following the Minister’s directive the tourism gathering transitioned into an annual occasion.
The convention, a comply with up of an inaugural conference held in Mombasa in November 2022, goals to consolidate networks, synergies, and variety to maximise the tourism potential between Uganda and Kenya’s Coastal Area.
Talking on the opening ceremony on Monday, Mulimba emphasised the strategic significance of the convention for each international locations.
He underscored their untapped potential and highlighted how exploration and international showcasing, catalyzed by platforms such because the tourism convention can propel development.
“As you might be conscious, Uganda is endowed with distinctive safaris, wealthy cultural and historic heritage, a wide range of points of interest of natural world, together with the mountain gorillas, tree climbing lions and over 1063 chook species in nationwide parks and guarded areas unfold throughout the nation,” Mulimba stated.
He added: “Alternatively, the Coastal area of Kenya is endowed a number of tourism points of interest from the historic Fort Jesus, Lovely Seashores and Resorts, Marine Nationwide Parks, Elephant sanctuary, the Dolphins, Wildlife Parks, slave caves and sacred forests, Vasco Da Gama Fort in Malindi, White sands, the Coral Reefs, diving and snorkeling amongst others.”
The State Minister, nonetheless, decried info gaps in so far as the tourism merchandise of the 2 international locations are involved.
“An enormous part of the inhabitants, together with tourism stakeholders, isn’t conscious of the wealthy and numerous merchandise in one another’s international locations, even when the 2 international locations stay one another’s high vacationer supply markets,” stated Mulimba.
He known as on the tourism stakeholders to boost consciousness in regards to the tourism merchandise in each international locations to foster the rise of vacationer numbers between the 2 nations.
The convention will search to evaluate progress because the 2022 convention, consider vacation spot merchandise and improve synergies amongst key tourism gamers.
Contributors may also discover funding alternatives, enterprise networking, along with gaining a firsthand expertise to points of interest within the coastal area.
Ambassador Mukumbya defined that the tourism convention operates on a mannequin of complementary, not competitors.
He identified that each international locations have distinctive tourism merchandise that can not be duplicated, however could be complemented to spice up tourism numbers in each Uganda and Kenya.
“Uganda does not have seashores like those we see right here. We even have some issues we name seashores, however they aren’t fairly similar to what now we have right here.We do not have Fort Jesus, and we’re not about to create one. We do not have Vasco Da Gama’s pillar, and we’re not about to create one.
What do now we have in Uganda? We’ve the mountain gorillas, and please, Kenyans, these monkeys and no matter they’re, are usually not about to show into mountain gorillas. Even with evolution, they won’t change into mountain gorillas,” stated Ambassador Mukumbya.
Kwale Governor Fatuma Achani emphasised on the necessity for collaboration amongst tourism gamers within the two international locations.
“The convention theme depicts the significance of constructing synergies and complementarity based mostly on the completely different tourism merchandise purchased by Uganda and Kenya price,” she stated.
Ambassador Mukumbya highlighted key successes of the 2022 convention saying the 2023 gathering supplies a chance to construct on positive aspects made.
“Final yr after the convention, we took Ugandans who got here for the convention on excursions on the coast right here in Diani, in Mombasa and Malindi. Then, after the convention, we took some Kenyans to Uganda on a fam journey to expertise these merchandise, in order that when they’re promoting, they’re promoting one thing they’ve skilled.”
Convention contributors are scheduled to take excursions alongside the Kenyan Coast from Wednesday to Saturday.
The excursions will present the 200-strong Ugandan delegation with the chance to expertise and chill out on the pristine seashores of Diani in Kwale, and Bamburi and Nyali in Mombasa.
Water sports activities lovers and journey lovers will take part in actions reminiscent of snorkeling, scuba diving, kite browsing, deep-sea fishing, dolphin-watching excursions, and coral reef exploration.
Delegates eager on the coastal tradition will discover Swahili cuisines and traditions. They may also have a chance to go to outdated cities, and native markets. These journeys will in the end place the contributors higher to market these points of interest.
A Kenyan delegation is scheduled to conduct a familiarization journey to Uganda from November 22 to December 3.
The journey will embrace visits to cultural and non secular websites, such because the Ndere Centre and the Namugongo Martyrs Shrine.
It should additionally cowl heritage and wildlife parks together with the Supply of the Nile, Bwindi Nationwide Park, and Murchison Falls. Moreover, the Kenyan delegation can have the chance to expertise the city nightlife and different numerous tourism choices.