By Tabora Bojang
The Gambia is aiming to boost foreign direct investment and develop entrepreneurship to create jobs and achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.
It intends to implement the United Nations conference on trade and development’s investment policy review of the country and a National Entrepreneurship Policy.
The Investment policy measure recommended by UNCTAD, combined with a national entrepreneurship policy, both of which were presented in Geneva Switzerland on Tuesday aims to assist the Gambia in achieving its development objectives.
Speaking at the event, the Minister of Trade, Industry, Regional Integration and Employment Dr. Isatou Touray said the presentation of the two recommendations could not have come at a better time while expressing optimism for the investment prospects of the country.
“The recommendations highlighted in the reports will indeed be implemented; the IPR and NEP will go a long way in re-positioning The Gambia.” she added.
The IPR assessed The Gambia’s regulatory environment as it affects businesses and set out recommendations for improvement. Among the reforms the statement proposes is the clarification of laws affecting investors.
The report also recommends the reinforcement of resources for their implementation and the reduction of Government interference in business operations.
Targeted and proactive measures to attract FDI will be crucial to realising investment opportunities in three priority sectors: fisheries, groundnuts and cashew manufacturing, the review says, as well as placing emphasis on information and communication technology (ICT) investment.
If the country succeeds at attracting increased FDI and supporting local businesses, it hopes to raise economic growth and provide jobs in emerging sectors, like ICT, for the many Gambians who leave the country each year in search of livelihoods abroad.