By Tabora Bojang
Gambian and Ghanaian tourism stakeholders signed a Memorandum of Understanding, (MOU) Tuesday to strengthen cooperation between the two countries to promote tourism development initiatives.
Gambia Hotel Association chairman Bunama Njie signed the MoU on behalf of The Gambia, together with his counterpart Bella Ahu, the president of the Ghana Tourism Association, who also signed the pact on his country’s behalf.
The agreement covers various areas of cooperation on products and services, and encourages joint regional marketing efforts to increase the contribution of tourism to economies. It will also promote responsible tourism, exchange programmes on training, research and capacity development and cultural exchanges.
Chairman Njie said the MoU “will undoubtedly add significant value to the tourism development of the two countries”.
He also said the pact came at a time when new approaches towards attaining year-round tourism goals are being “unleashed, with a view to bringing vibrancy and transformational development in the tourism sector”.
Njie spoke on the need for stakeholders to work together to transform the tourism sector in a dynamic way that responds to the extant challenges of tourism by innovatively employing new strategies and the provision of high quality products and marketing strategies marched by services of international standards.
He said these would not only attract eco-minded and discerning high spending tourism but also help the country remain a competitive tourist destination.
Bella Ahu equipped: “Our two great countries have all what it takes to make the hospitality industry contribute positively and qualitatively to the growth of our economy, the people, and the community and that change starts today.”
The MoU also aims to enhance sub-regional cooperation among private sectors, NGO’s, and the communities.
Officials say it marks the consolidation of relationship building between the two countries and turn their industry aspirations into reality.