Uganda Tourism Board joins GSTC

Uganda Tourism Board has joined as a Member of the Global Sustainable Tourism Council (GSTC)

Uganda is a landlocked country in East Africa known for its diverse geography and cultural variety. The country’s landscape ranges from the snow-capped Rwenzori Mountains to the extensive Lake Victoria, the largest lake on the continent. The capital, Kampala, is characterized by its mix of urban activity and the natural beauty of its surrounding hills and the shores of Lake Victoria.

The country is home to a range of ethnic groups and traditions, influenced by both neighboring countries and local heritage. This blend of cultures is reflected in Uganda’s variety of food, music, and handicrafts, highlighting its cultural diversity and history.

Sustainability in Uganda

Uganda Tourism Board joins GSTCUganda adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in 2015, its government recognizes the need for high-quality and inclusive development planning to consolidate gains and advance in achieving SDGs. A fully-fledged national SDG Secretariat was established to support the SDG Coordination architecture to ensure that Uganda stays on track in implementing the SDGs. 

Uganda embarked on a transformative journey towards sustainable development by integrating green growth principles into its National Development Plan III (NDP III). With a commitment to balancing economic progress with environmental preservation. This NDP is the third in a series of six NDPs that will guide the nation and deliver the aspirations of the people of Uganda, as articulated in Uganda Vision 2040, which was launched in 2013 aiming for a ‘transformed Ugandan society from a peasant to a modern and prosperous country within 30 years’.

Besides the Global Goals, the country is committed to regional frameworks such as the African Union Agenda 2063, East African Community (EAC) Vision 2050, the Common Market for East and Southern Africa (COMESA), and the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA).

Uganda Tourism Board CEO, Lilly Ajarova expressed enthusiasm for the partnership, saying that “Joining the Global Sustainable Tourism Council underscores Uganda’s dedication to fostering sustainable tourism development. Uganda will actively engage in initiatives to promote sustainability standards, share best practices, and collaborate with stakeholders to advance sustainable tourism development in the region. This collaboration aligns with our vision of promoting responsible travel practices while preserving our natural and cultural heritage for generations to come.”

GSTC Welcomes Uganda Tourism Board

“Uganda’s decision to join the GSTC is a significant step forward in promoting sustainable tourism practices. We value the commitment of the Uganda Tourism Board in supporting our mission. We look forward to working with them to advance sustainable tourism practices in Uganda and beyond,” says Randy Durband, CEO of GSTC.

GSTC encourages destinations pursuing sustainability practices in tourism development and management to join as GSTC members and apply the GSTC Destination Criteria, which eventually can help achieve certification by a GSTC-Accredited Certification Body

About Uganda Tourism Board

Uganda Tourist Board (UTB) is a statutory organization established by the Uganda Tourist Board Statute 1994. The Board’s mandate is to develop and promote tourism, wildlife, and heritage resources to enhance Uganda as a competitive and preferred tourist destination while contributing to the national economy as well as promote quality assurance in tourist facilities through training, grading and classification, promote tourism investment, support, and act as a liaison for the private sector in tourism development.

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About the GSTC 

The Global Sustainable Tourism Council® (GSTC®) establishes and manages global sustainable standards, known as the GSTC Criteria. There are two sets: Destination Criteria for public policy-makers and destination managers, and Industry Criteria for hotels and tour operators. These are the guiding principles and minimum requirements that any tourism business or destination should aspire to reach in order to protect and sustain the world’s natural and cultural resources while ensuring tourism meets its potential as a tool for conservation and poverty alleviation.

The GSTC Criteria form the foundation for GSTC’s assurance role for Certification Bodies that certify hotels/accommodations, tour operators, and destinations as having sustainable policies and practices in place. GSTC does not directly certify any products or services, but provides accreditation to those that do. The GSTC is an independent and neutral USA-registered 501(c)3 non-profit organization that represents a diverse and global membership, including national and provincial governments, leading travel companies, hotels, tour operators, NGOs, individuals and communities – all striving to achieve best practices in sustainable tourism.

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Statements expressed in this announcement are presented for informational purposes only and should not be taken as an endorsement or recommendation by GSTC, unless clearly stated.