And UTB hopes to profit from the publicity as these stars attract massive media and global attention internationally. The Barcelona legends will also visit Bwindi Impenetrable Forest and Murchison Falls national parks as well as the Source of the Nile. They will then play an exhibition match against a selected Uganda Cranes team at Namboole stadium.
“Imagine such icons tweeting and facebooking about gorillas in Bwindi, pictures while at the Source of the Nile,” said UTB chief executive officer Stephen Asiimwe.
According to UTB, the projected earnings of $2bn (about Shs 5.3 trillion) per annum in the next few years from tourism are about a third of the 2015-16 annual budget, a figure which highlights the immense contribution the sector will have in the future, surpassing almost any sector, even before oil production begins.
“As part of efforts to actualize the industry’s full potential, the legends tour needs to be fully integrated to realise such figures, because these stars are nationals of different countries from Europe and South America,” Asiimwe adds.
Asiimwe also noted that this tour would come in handy after the approval of the East Africa Sports Tourism Initiative (EASTI) that is held annually across the region as the ministry taps into sports industry.
The legends will be accompanied by top foreign media houses and personal media attachés.
“I want to return here [Uganda] for holiday because of the weather in Uganda, so unique and relaxing,” remarked Rayco Garcia, the RG Football Academy director and former Barcelona player.
More than Shs 900m was raised towards the tour during a dinner hosted by tourism minister Maria Mutagamba at Serene Suites last month.
During the tour, Unicef, in collaboration with RG Football Academy solutions , will bring 1,000 children from the districts of Moroto, Mbarara, Gulu and Arua to watch the match and get some inspiration from these global stars
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