The East Africa Tourism Platform (EATP) is the private sector body for tourism in East Africa, working towards promoting the interest and participation of the private sector in the East African Community (EAC) integration process. EATP is the first regional tourism apex body put into place, able to lobby at the EAC level and at the level of national governments. The vision of creating and promote a vibrant and diverse single tourism destination is the driving force. EATP promotes intra and inter-regional tourism though advocacy, marketing, skills development, research and information sharing. The main strategic objectives of EATP are to:
- Intermediate and reduce obstacles to intra and inter-regional tourism
- Promote an intra and inter-regional tourism marketing approach
- Facilitate continuous skills development in the tourism sector
- Promote harmonized standards and codes of conduct of tourism facilities and services
- Facilitate access to finance and risk management services
- Share information and provide networking opportunities
Providing positive and results oriented policy advocacy is the core objective of the platform. EATP enhances East African’s tourism competitiveness through effective dialogue for policy reforms and regulations, improved tourism services export capabilities and strengthening tourism private sector’s capacity and sustainability.
Since its launch EATP can be credited for advocating for the single tourist visa, use of national IDs as travel documents for citizens between Kenya, Rwanda and Uganda, free movement of tourism services, partial liberalization of EAC air space and joint marketing initiatives which is mainly under the East Africa Northern Corridor. These initiatives have already started having positive effects on regional travel. Other initiatives such joint marketing initiatives, technical support for national associations or harmonization of standards and codes of conduct of tourism facilities and services are ongoing and will enhance the regional destination competitiveness.