By Bekai Njie
The 12th Edition of the Annual Trade Fair Gambia International under the theme: ‘Economic Transformation for Gambian Businesses,’ was Tuesday opened at the Independence Stadium in Bakau.
Championed by the Gambia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GCCI), the event was graced by government officials, diplomatic and councilor corps as well as the business community both local and international.
Dr. Isatou Touray, the minister of Trade Regional Integration and Employment, said GCCI has been an outstanding partner to the government in shaping the business environment consistently over the years, saying this new government will continue to count on them for development.
She described the trade fair as an excellent platform for the Gambian business to showcase their products and to network with those who have the better understanding of the global distribution channels.
She reiterated government’s commitment to private sector development. “Our gathering demonstrates government’s commitment to private sector development. I’m pleased to assure you of my ministry’s support to ensure a successful trade fair annually”, she said.
Minister Touray emphasised the importance of a vibrant private sector as a principal source of economic growth and employment, noting it is an essential component in the alleviation of poverty and as a means of providing different economic opportunities. She assured the private sector and the business community of an enabling environment and inclusive growth in economic transformation.
The GCCI President and Ambassador at Large Muhammed Jagana, said; “this is the new beginning of economic democracy which will encourage and ensure equity people inclusion into all sectors of our economy, free discrimination and anti-competition.”
The GCCI president said this year’s edition is focused on providing job creation especially for the youths.
He said GCCI will continue to serve as the voice for the private sector and continue to work with all stakeholders the government inclusive and most particularly the MSEs whom he said constitutes 80% exhibitors in this year’s trade fair.
The 12th Edition of the Trade Fair Gambia International begins on the 24th March-15th April 2018