By Watchdog reporter
The Pearl of Africa Tourism Expo (POATE 2017) takes off Friday at the Kampala Sheraton Hotel Gardens (Jubilee Gardens) with over 200 tourism, tour and travel; and education businesses from Uganda, East Africa and international participating.
The three-day tourism expo has also attracted the many regional and continental tourism boards and ministers who are in Uganda for business.
Zimbabwe’s Deputy Minister of Tourism and the Hospitality Industry, Ms Anastancia Ndhlovu, has already arrived in the country.
She was last night hosted to a cultural gala along with other international dignitaries at the Ndere Centre by Prof. Ephraim Kamuntu, the Uganda Minister of Tourism, Wildlife and Antiquities.
Zimbabwe is vying for the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) leadership and the trip to Uganda is very timely. As part of POATE, there will be a ministerial round table that will bring together regional tourism ministers.
Over 80 international hosted buyers and media players have descended on Uganda for POATE 2017 which will take place starting today Friday, through Saturday and ending on Sunday.
Hosted buyers are business leaders who sell tourism packages in their respective countries.
The hosted buyers have traveled around Uganda’s tourism attractions from Kampala to Kidepo Valley National Park, Murchison Falls National Park, Bwindi and Mgahinga National Parks, Kibale Forest National Park, the Source of the Nile, River Nile rapids other star attractions.
POATE, in its third edition,is an annual event in Uganda, organized by Uganda Tourism Board (UTB) to bring together all tourism stakeholders and other service providers from both the East African region and international community.
The Climax of POATE will be the Tourism Excellence Awards on Sunday at a live music gala dinner, where leading tourism players and facilities will be recognized for their performance.
Under the theme “Tourism is Everybody’s Business”, POATE is aimed at raising the profile of Uganda as a preferred destination, both domestically and regionally as the main exhibition shall be happening between 17–19 February 2017.
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