By Yunus S Saliu
As part of his ongoing tour to different companies, agencies, and departments under his Ministry, the Minister of Trade, Industry, Regional Integration and Employment (MoTIE) has expressed pride in seeing Made in The Gambia products during his visit to Gambia Milling Cooperation and Nessim Trading, Banjul last Tuesday.
Honourable Minister Baboucarr Ousmaila Joof, speaking to the members of the press who accompanied him on the tour that he’s beginning to see an answer in distance, with the African Continental Free Trade Agreement and “the availability of bigger market to our Made in The Gambia products.”
Filled with joy, he said “I feel proud of being a Gambia and I think that is the thing we need to support. The government in whatever forms will make sure it supports the local or domestic producers and create jobs like they (visited factories) are doing.”
However, Minister Joof described the visit as another great day that signal a lot to him in term of the potential to create jobs in this country and also that will address food security “because a lot of what we eat is connected to flour which we know the raw materials are not available in the country yet.”
The Minister emphasised that he refused to give up the possibility of the national research institute coming up with appropriate soil and condition to enable the country to grow wheat.
More so, the Minister dilated on the last 12 months’ activities across the world which include the geopolitical situation in Russia-Ukraine, and said it has taught the country the need to look up alternative options “knowing that 60 to 70 percent of our food in this country comes from flour I think that’s one thing we need to look into as government.”
He, therefore, assured that the two existing milling companies visited have the potential to provide the country-required flours throughout the country, while he also discussed the issues of price and shipping conditions during the visit.
The Honourable Minister and his delegate on day two of his tour visited the Weight and Measure Department, GMC, and Nessim Trading (also flour mill) all in Banjul, and have a side meeting with senior officials of each institution.
In turn, each institution tabled its constraints while the Minister and team assured of solutions, as the tour continues.