Bakary Jammeh said The Gambia has “the friendliest people in the world, always welcoming and with a smile. The beaches in The Gambia are considered the most beautiful in the world.”
With safety being a top concern for tourists, the GTB boss pointed out the country’s peaceful and stable political environment with one of the lowest crime rates in Africa.
He added: “In The Gambia, men and women can move at ease at any time of day. Tourism as an instrument not only contributes to the development of The Gambia, but also a means to combat the spectre of poverty. Tourism activity promotes indirect jobs. There are many Gambians make a living thanks to the many activities taking place as a result of tourism.”
Herald Tribune newspaper reported that the African continent is believed to have made a strong case in Madrid for its tourism potential, thanks to countries like The Gambia, Ethiopia, Ghana, Sudan and Togo, all of which are taking part in the 35th edition of the International Tourism Fair (FITUR).
“West Africa especially is being presented as a new tourist destination for the general public, with tour wholesalers greatly attracted to the region’s unspoiled natural beauty, warm climate and friendly people,” the newspaper reported.
FITUR this year features 12 percent more exhibitors than in 2014, of which about 2 percent is due to increased participation from Africa, a market that seeks to recover the tourist dollars it has lost in recent months.
Observers said after agriculture, tourism is one of the activities that contribute most to the GDP of many African countries.
It is believed that in some African states tourism sector’s contribution can reach up to one-fifth of the gross domestic product.
The tourism season in the country, this year, has seen a massive 65 percent decline due to the deadly Ebola outbreak that ravaged Guinea, Sierra-Leone and Liberia killing thousands and wreaking havoc on various economies.]]>