Minister Bah launches Roadmap for Gambia’s creative industries

Friday, December 6, 2019

The Youth Empowerment in collaboration with the Ministry of Tourism and Culture and National Centre for Arts and Culture, Tuesday, launched the first ever Youth and Trade Roadmap for The Gambia’s creative industries.

The Youth and Trade Roadmap is meant to support innovation and improve on the productive capacity of SMEs, strengthen institutional support and increase economic value and market access to foster economic growth, employment creation, entrepreneurial ventures and skills development.

The Roadmap, among other things, outlines a plan of action to activate economic opportunities related to skills development, entrepreneurship, market-led value chain development and sector coordination.

In addition, the roadmap has mapped out all key crosscutting industry themes for youth empowerment and employment, namely MSME competitiveness, technical and vocational education and training (TVET) effectiveness, policies’ relevance and implementation, and institutional capacities.

Further to that, it also outlines strategic objectives that will activate economic opportunities related to skills development, entrepreneurship, market-led value chain development and sector coordination.

The Youth and Trade Roadmap for the Gambia’s Creative Industries was developed under the guidance of the Ministry of Tourism and Culture, National Centre for Arts and Culture, with technical assistance from the International Trade Centre (ITC) as part of the Youth Empowerment Project (YEP).

The Youth Empowerment Project (YEP) supports youth employment and entrepreneurship in the country in order to address the root causes of irregular migration, and it is funded by the European Union (EU) under the Emergency Trust Fund for Africa.

Presiding over the launching of the Roadmap, Hamat N.K. Bah, minister for Tourism and Culture disclosed that the Roadmap is aligned to the country’s development priorities identified in the National Development Plan (NDP) 2018-2021.

He noted that the Roadmap for the creative industries comes at a crucial time to strengthen sector development in the country, address major competitiveness constraints and directly empower youth.

To promote the Gambia’s cultural heritage, he pointed out the need for synergies between the tourism sector and new technologies to be further developed.

Among other key priorities identified in the Roadmap by the stakeholders, Minister Bah said it is to protect intellectual property rights with the aim of increasing income of the creative actors and protect their creations.

“The government will take this matter in hand and seek technical assistance in this regard, it is of the utmost importance that Gambia enforces intellectual property regulation to protect and strengthen the image of Gambian creations,” Mr. Bah assured.

The minister congratulated all the stakeholders for their time, insights and efforts to come out with the worthy roadmap. He therefore thanked International Trade Centre (ITC) for its technical assistance in the successful design of the Roadmap, while extending appreciation to the European Union (EU) for funding the Youth Empowerment Project (YEP).

EU Ambassador to The Gambia, Deputy Executive Director of International Trade Centre, Mrs. Dorothy Tembo, director general, National Centre for Arts and Culture, Hassoum Ceesay, representative of Sector Association, Modou Lamin Sowe, Philip Kupert director of Goethe Institute among others delivered statements at the launching.

Author: Yunus S. Saliu