By Lamin Cham in Dakar
Gambian and Senegalese public and private economic operators have been accorded an opportunity to explore prospects in both countries as well as benefit from the two governments’ goodwill to remove bureaucracies in registering or match-making of businesses in the two countries.
Hundreds of business heads and investors from the two countries met yesterday at the Radisson Blue Hotel in Dakar in a forum organised by the two nations’ investment agencies, Giepa and Apix, which took advantage of the Gambia Day celebration—a concept initiated by The Gambia’s High Commission in Dakar—to exhibit Gambian culture, as well as promote Senegambia relations.
The prime minister of Senegal, Amadou Ba and the vice president of The Gambia, Muhammed Jallow, took turns to register their respective leaders’ commitment to break any remaining barriers in relations between the two peoples in all areas, especially trade and investment.
”Just after the recent Presidential Council meeting last August in Banjul, President Sall had instructed his government officials that when dealing with The Gambia, they don’t have to demand any bureaucratic protocols but only telephone calls. And that has already been demonstrated and this gathering must follow in that spirit,” VP Jallow said to a rousing applause.
The Gambian High Commissioner to Dakar, Hadrammeh Sidibeh, expressed his office’s pride to be able to put together this maiden and successful event and thanked his staff and all government and private agencies in both countries who made it possible. The two countries’ investment agencies, Giepa and Apix, assured the investors that the forum has been put together to smoothen the way for greater integration of businesses and trade in line with the Ecowas concept.
Following the opening ceremony, the two sides had a marathon presentation of investment opportunities in each country as well as simplifying trade, customs, transportations between them.
In a show of instant success, the forum witnessed the signing of an MoU between the Gambia Public Transport Service Corporation and the Dakar Dem Dikk while Giepa and Apix too formalised a loose cooperation.
The forum discussed areas in tourism, arts, agriculture, petroleum, fisheries among others.
The Gambia Day climaxes this evening with a gala and cultural night featuring Gambian and Senegalese artists at the Radisson Blu Hotel.