In a move to boost fashion tourism, the Uganda Tourism Board (UTB) has announced a Shs 74 million sponsorship package for this year’s Uganda International Fashion Week (UIFW).
Making the announcement at the launch of the 6th edition of the UIFW slated for the 2nd to 4th August, 2019 at the Kampala Serena Hotel, UTB’s Marketing Manager, Claire Mugabi, emphasised the need to look at other segments of tourism that go beyond just wildlife.
The fashion industry world over is a $700 billion industry and Uganda can tap into this through the development of its own fashion industry as it looks to position itself as a major cultural hub in the region and on the continent.
Already supporting other tourist cultural activities, UTB is looking to create broader tourism opportunities that can also attract Ugandans as well who are growing an appetite for local designers, many of whom are already establishing themselves on the market.
“The opportunities are enormous around our culture, and each of these different people in Uganda has a fashion that is unique. The Uganda International Fashion Week, therefore, gives us the opportunity to showcase our unique culture to a global audience,” remarked Mugabi.
Hosted by Arapapa, Santa Anzo, under the theme “Business behind Fashion”, the UIFW will be focusing on showcasing the potential of the fashion industry as a key contributor to tourism and economic development.
“Tourism by extension is an industry that has the potential to employ many youths in Uganda. It doesn’t take much to become a participant in this lucrative industry. All one needs is the will and determination,” MUgabi added.
With the growing trend of Ugandans feeling proud to wear Ugandan designers, to actually support our own talents and our own country, this can be used as an opportunity for many unemployed youths to venture into the cultural and fashion industry to earn a living.
A number of fashion designers are finding success in selling their apparel to tourists both local and international.
This is giving Uganda’s tourism industry an opportunity to provide diverse culture and fashion offerings to tourists.
“We also have to diversify our range of products so as to showcase our uniqueness. These are some of the things that we are doing as UTB,” added Mugabi.