The Ministry of Trade Industry Regional Integration and Employment in collaboration with the ECOWAS Trade Negotiation Capacity Building Project (ECOWAS-TNCB) recently convened a two-day capacity building forum on trade negotiation designed to maintain Gambia’s level of commitment on the trade facilitation agreement.
Giving his opening remark, Kulawole Safora the principal programme officer Trade at the ECOWAS Commission underscored the importance of trade facilitation as it brings great benefits not only to producers, but also to the consumer communities.
He maintained that the objective of the workshop was to try and identify capacity building requirement to key sectors in a bid to facilitate the implementation of the agreement
Safora expressed optimism that the process will allow them to work towards the additional notifications required for the World Trade Organisation process as well as the ratification of trade process agreement both at national and regional levels.
He explained that the number of trade facilitations include good custom connectivity, the ECOWAS common external trade, as well as all those trades that simplify harmonising the good and free movement with their international partners
For her part, Sabine Friedrich of Gesellschaft International Zusammenarbiet (GIZ), stated that her organization has been supporting the commission on behalf of the German Development Programme since 2007, noting that the project development has 3 main areas, which includes organisational development, peace and security.
She went on to say that the current page has been working since 2009 with a budget of 22 thousand Euros, and that they are currently implementing a project called Promoting West African countries Integration Finance by the European Union.
Abdoulie Jammeh, the director of Trade at the Ministry of Trade Industry Regional Integration and Employment thanked the ECOWAS Commission and GIZ for supporting the Ministry to organised this trade facilitation dialogue in The Gambia.
“This is not the first time we have been supported by the ECOWAS Commission to develop trade related capacities in The Gambia. You will recall that the Commission, through the Trade Negotiation Capacity Building Project has supported The Gambia to establish and strengthened the capacity of its Inter-Institutional Committee for effective trade policy decision making”, he added
by Jainaba D. Jatta