The foundation Tallinn Development and Training Centre (TDTC) organized a study visit for six representative of Uganda to Tallinn and Estonia during the course of the developmental co-operation project “Establishing tourist information centres in Uganda and building their capacities on the example of Tallinn” from 16 of August to 25 of August 2015. The study visit was in accordance with the approved action plan of the developmental co-operation project and was attended by leaders from the Ugandan Ministry of Public Services, Ugandan Ministry of Tourism, Wildlife and Antiquities, Jinja’s and Entebbe’s tourism department ś and tourism information centres.
The aim of the study visit was to listen to theoretical lectures on tourism in Tallinn and University of Tartu Pärnu College. In addition, the participants took part in practical trainings at Tallinn Tourism Information Centre, visited Estonia’s best countryside tourism businesses, tourism information centres and visitor’s centres in different parts of Estonia. The participants were also given a comprehensive overview of Estonia’s in Tallinn’s e-governance and a variety of e-services. The theoretical lectures to the Ugandan delegation members were held by Haaga-Helia Institute’s lecturer Ain Hinsberg, the Estonian Travel and Tourism Association’s Secretary General Kristen Lahtein, University of Tartu Pärnu College’s Head of Office of Department of Tourism Studies Heli Müristaja, chief specialist of Pärnu City Government’s tourism department Orvika Reilent and experts from the City of Tallinn Daily Lehtmets, Varri Väli, Ülle Purga and Silja Veerme.
The Head of the Government Secretariat of the Republic of Estonia Aivar Rahno introduced to the Ugandan delegation developments of e-governance and City Secretary of Tallinn Toomas Sepp introduced the City of Tallinn’s e-governance, e-services, the city’s customer services operating principles and developments. The guests also visited e-Estonia showroom.
The Ugandan delegation members met with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Development Co- operation and Humanitarian Aid Division’s director Kaili Terras and political department’s desk officer Liis Udal. The guests gave an overview of the project’s activities in Uganda, work and developments of Jinja’s and Entebbe’s tourism information centres and presented a letter to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs from the Ugandan Ministry of Public Services with a desire to continue and further develop the successful co-operation.
A meeting took place at Enterprise Estonia (EAS), where Tourism Marketing’s Sectoral Manager Ott Sarapuu gave an overview about the directions of Estonia’s tourism, co- operation with various partners at the tourism market, as well as a demonstration of the various possibilities of presenting Estonia as a tourism destination.
In addition to tourism information centres of Tallinn the member of the Ugandan delegation visited tourism information centres in Pärnu, Paide, Rakvere, Kuressaare, Orissaare and Leisi, and received an overview of their activities and information materials that are distributed by them.
As one of the main goals of the study visit was to introduce Estonia’s best countryside tourism businesses and their co-operation with the state and local government agencies the guests visited Raudsilla Hiking Centre, Käsmu Maritime Museum, Altja fishermen’s village, Palmse and Vihula Manors, Kuusiku Nature Farm, Rakvere Castle, Paide Time Centre, Toosikannu recreation centre and Raft Trips raft house. They visited the city of Pärnu and Saaremaa, where the Ugandan delegation in addition to training sessions participate in fishing and food making, went to the sauna for the first time in their lives, visited Anne Veski’s concert at the Kaali Meteor Crater.
The guests from Uganda gave an interview covering their activities, experiences and lessons learned in Estonia to the newspaper Saarte Hääl, radio station Kuma Radio, Raepress and the study visit was reflected by clip in the news of Tallinn TV. At the meetings with the experts from Tallinn the two parties discussed developmental co- operation program’s future joint activities in developing tourism information centers in Uganda, steps in the developing of tourism services in Uganda and making Uganda better known as a tourism destination. Also the topics of the next visit were discussed and agreed upon.
The next visit of the delegation of experts of Tallinn is scheduled for 04.10-13.10.2015, during which in accordance with the developmental co-operation’s program they will advise tourism information center´s staff in Jinja, Entebbe and Mbarara. They will attended meetings with local government´s leaders, tourism developers and entrepreneurs, advise TIC staff members of UTB, UWA, Jinja and Entebbe as well as regional tourism entrepreneurs on preparing and elaborating tourism service packages. The delegation from Tallinn will meet with the leaders of the Ugandan Ministry of Public Service, UTB, UWA, CSCU and tourism specialists.
Furthermore, two winners of the tourism-themed student paper competition will receive prizes from the City of Tallinn in Jinja. During the visit, there will be held negotiations on possible future continuation project’s topics (one- stop- shop implementation in Ugandan governments and developing of e-services).
Collaborative project funded by the Estonian Foreign Ministry’s Development Co-operation and Humanitarian Aid funds.