By Mariatou Ngum
Stakeholders on Wednesday, October 26th validated the draft survey on Skills to Facilitate Formalization for Informal Sector Workers and Economic Units in The Gambia (SFF survey) at a workshop held at the Senegambia Beach Hotel.
The convergence was organized by the Directorate of Employment under the Ministry of Trade, Industry, Regional Integration and Employment (MoTIE), in partnership with the International Labour Organization (ILO).
The Government through MOTIE, its social partners and ILO agreed to cooperate for the implementation of the project “Boosting post-COVID-19 economic recovery and resilience in The Gambia, through the formalization of informal enterprises and their workers” (FORMGIS), funded by the ILO.
Through this project, the parties aim to support the economic development of The Gambia and improve the livelihoods of its people, as well as contribute to the post-COVID-19 recovery. The project aims to strengthen the tripartite constituents’ capacity to facilitate the transition from the informal to the formal economy.
Thus, this Ministry through support from FORMGIS Project hired the services of a consultant to conduct the survey in order to gain a better understanding of the skills needed to enable informal sector workers formalize.
In his opening remarks, Mr. Fabba Jammeh, the Director of the Employment Directorate, stated that the Government of The Gambia through MoTIE has great plans to look at how they can transform the industry or the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) ecosystem to ensure that their contribution to national development is improved and also increased.
He said the formalization is one thing that has been established in the MSME mapping study and they believed that they need to take it up to mobilize the informal sector and to ensure there are transitions into the formalized sector, adding revenue perspective and technology and innovation that are going to be associated with the process of formalization.
Mr. Jammeh thanked ILO for their support and intervention as well as the consultant for his brilliant work.
For her part, Ms Ilca Webster from ILO Dakar Office thanked the participants for attending the validation workshop, noting that ILO is here to support the maintenance and further development of those who are in the informal sector. “With this objective, the ILO promotes the formalization of the informal sector in The Gambia and develops strategy for formalization,” she stated.