May 10, 2010, 2:18 PM
thousand Gambian youths will receive free technical and vocational training as
part of an 11-million Euro project.
The project, funded by the European Union (EU) and Trust Fund for Africa and the International Trade Centre, seeks to reduce poverty and promote equitable inclusive and sustainable development in The Gambia.
Speaking at the launching ceremony held at the Kairaba Beach Hotel, the Minister of Trade, Employment and Regional Integration, Dr Isatou Touray, said the project would help avert illegal or back-way migration of Gambians to Europe.
Also speaking on the occasion was the European Commissioner Neven Mimica, who said the project would provide entrepreneurship service - such as business advisory support and access to finance - for at least 8,000 youths.
He said the project would encourage the return of skilled Gambian migrants by supporting the creation of jobs across the country, and supporting their re-integration into the economy and society.
In his remarks, Arancha Gonzalez of the International Trade Centre (ITC) Trade Impact for Good, also said the project would go a long way in helping the Gambian youths to acquire new skills.
He added that if the youths undergo the training it would help them to be job creators rather than job seekers, and if that is achieved The Gambia will be among the countries people will travel to from all over the world to seek employment.
The Gambia’s new government has said the Jammeh administration’s “redundant economic policies” were responsible for the disorder and use of the ‘back-way,’ - the perilous route that takes immigrants who trek the Sahara desert to Libya, where they cross the Mediterranean into Europe.