Uganda is one of the countries with potential tourism, various to select, however this has not been tapped and has sparked off debate on the approaches that the sector should take to finance its growth. The sector which was growing before the 1990s has recovered considerably, shown by the figures from the ministry of Trade and Tourism, revenues collected have been rising considerably from $350 million in 2006, $450 million in 2007 and $600 million in 2008.
Tourism contributes 80% of Uganda’s GDP and is seen as one of the sectors with the most promising growth prospects; the government has often kept it on the back burner in its budgeting processes. Budget estimates for 2010/11 show that the tourism ministry could suffer a budget cut of nearly 20 per cent from that of the current financial year.
Mr. Moses Mapesa, the executive director of Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA), notes that, encroachment on the tourism budget would not affect the sector as more had not been preceded by encroachment in wildlife protected areas. Between 2007 and 2008, oil companies were given a green light to carry out exploration activities in Queen Elizabeth and Murchison Falls National Parks, while Hima Cement was granted a license to mine cement at Durra in Queen Elizabeth National Park.
The human presence and the machinery create a none stopping disturbance to the animals in the park this makes the animals migrate to other areas that are noise free, though this companies are compelled to ensure no damage to the parks.
Therefore the activities here that are a challenge have compelled the Authorities in these parks to strike a balance between development and conservation –an activity that was often carried out with the help of donor funding.
As tourism revenue has gone up, most revenue from one activity like gorilla tracking as this helps to save most of the parks that bring in more than what is put in terms of revenue. The mountain gorillas have helped to save other activities in the other parks like wildlife that include; hippos, elephants, impalas, zebras, gazelles, jaguars, cheetahs, kobs and many others to survive.
The revenues collected from the mountain gorillas permits have helped to support the conservation of other species, however this will soon move towards a period of more equitable distribution.” While a semi-autonomous status has given UWA the room to try out new conservation and fund-generating ideas, other sub-sectors that are funded solely by the government seem to luck creativity.
As the word goes untapped, there are some places that have been neglected and this include Wamala Tombs, Ntutsi Mounds and Nyero Rock Paintings and are being destroyed are there are no appropriate laws and funs to maintain this places then ignorance of locals neighboring around this sites for the benefit of tourism.
However government is sill committed in supporting the tourism industry financially were necessary