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Tuesday, 26th February 2019
A herd of Elephants at Murchison Falls
Tourism is a key driver of Uganda's economy; representing a significant opportunity to the attainment of Uganda Vision 2040. More growth is expected over the next five years, in line with the National Development Plan II 2015/16 - 2019/20, and complements the Uganda Tourism Master Plan.

The government of Uganda is focusing on the unlocking the binding constraints in five priority areas namely; marketing and promotion, human resource development, product development, natural and cultural resource conservation and tourism management and regulation.

Identified priority projects to be handled by both public and private sector entities include:
  • Establishing Lake Victoria Tourism circuit to enhance tourism activities and experiences around Entebbe for both domestic and regional visitors; 
  • Development of canopy walk to diversify product offering and enrich visitor experiences; 
  • Hoima International Airport to essentially, support the development and operation of the oil refinery as well as development and production of upstream oil.

The following are Investment Profiles of bankable projects in the Tourism Sector prepared by the Uganda Investment Authority (See: Bankable Projects, Viable Investment Opportunity, 3rd Edition, 2019/2020).

PROJECT TITLE: Development & Operation of Canopy Walk in Kibale National Park
Location: Sebitole
Project Description:
Mandated to manage wildlife protected areas that include all the national parks and wildlife reserves in Uganda, the Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) also manages and developes tourism within the protected areas. As such, UWA has identified the need for development of a canopy walk tourism product in the protected areas.

The canopy walk is part of the strategy to diversify product offering and enrich visitor experiences in Uganda. Ultimately, the canopy tourism experience is expected to create new sources of income generation for the organization, provide visitors with a new experience, and also allow for the exploration and better understanding of the forest canopy.

PROJECT TITLE: High-End Accommodation Cottages
Location: 10 National Parks
Project Description:
The project will construct 100 cottages for tourist accommodation. The project seeks to address bed
shortage in Bwindi, Mgahinga, Queen Elizabeth, Rwenzori, Semuliki, Kibale, Elgon, Murchison falls, Kidepo & Lake Mburo.

In the high tourism season, there's a 50% shortage of beds in the national parks.

PROJECT TITLE: Source of the Nile Development Project
Site/ Location: Source of the Nile - Jinja, Uganda
Public Private Partnership
Project Description:
The project is meant to build infrastructure around the source of the Nile such as public infrastructure (beautified), Cultural centres, Entertainment facilities, Hotel and recreation, Tourism water activities, Zip lines, Information Centre, Monuments and floating restaurants, alongside an improved golf already in existence for socioeconomic benefits.

Tourism Centre will lead to more jobs created (both professionally and non-professional) and each of the items mentioned above become a business line of their own.

Target market are tourists from all over the world, so the investments are to be first class.

PROJECT TITLE: Proposed Cable Car System and Ancillary Facilities
Project Site/ Location: Ruwenzori Mountains National Park
Public Private Partnership
Project Description:
After taking into consideration the various systems available, the construction methods for each system, it is recommended that the mono-cable gondola system like the one in Langkawi, Malaysia be used for the Rwenzori Cable Car installation with an initial capacity of 500 passengers per hour and final capacity of 1,000 passengers.
INVESTMENT AMOUNT REQUIRED US$ 30,800,000 (via Mihunga) and / or US$ 45,100,000 (via Kilembe)

PROJECT TITLE: Upgrading Kitagata Hot Springs 
Project Description:
The Kitagata hot springs is among the twenty-three (23) areas that have been studied and found to be good for low temperature geothermal uses that include electricity production and direct heat uses.

They attract about 200 visitors on daily basis. There are two hot springs adjacent to each other. Other famous hot springs are Sempaya in Bundibugyo, Kibiro in Hoima.

Site/ Location: Kampala
Project Description:
Development of a 4-star hotel project in Kampala as well as infrastructure/real estate projects in Uganda for warehouse, shopping mall, residential apartment.

PROPOSED INVESTMENT: Development of New Ecotourism Products and Services, Within and Outside the National Parks by The Private Sector or Through Public Private Partnerships.
Project Description:
There are numerous investments which can be undertaken in different national parks and enroute to national parks. These opportunities include Luxury hotels, tented camps and cottages; House Boats, Cruise Launches on the Nile and Sport fishing on the Albert, Edward and George; Walking Safaris in the wilderness areas and the volcanic craters; Canopy Walkways in tropical forests and sky trams; New tourism activities on rivers and falls e.g. Mpanga Falls, Karuma and Murchison Falls; Mountaineering packages for Rwenzori, Elgon and Mgahinga Mountains; Nature walks, game farming, game ranching and sport hunting on private property (private wildlife reserves); Internal air transport services to the national parks and other domestic touristic hubs; White water rafting on the Nile; Stop over facilities enroute to the national parks along major tourism circuits; Hot springs baths and supporting facilities and development of Lodges and other types of accommodation to suit the various categories of visitors.

PROPOSED INVESTMENT: Real Estate Development
Project Description:
Construction of high end middle and top class apartments in Kampala city, furnished and unfurnished 225 square meters per apartment for over 30 apartments, and equipment and machinery for construction.

Source: Uganda Investment Authority & Uganda Embassy, Berlin