#Article (Archive)

GCCI holds bi-lateral meeting, signs MoU with Ziguinchor counterpart

Oct 25, 2011, 12:34 PM | Article By: Cherno Omar Bobb

The Gambia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GCCI) and Ziguinchor Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ZCCI) on 19 October 2011 held a bilateral meeting where a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed between the two chambers at a ceremony held at the Jerma Beach Hotel.

Speaking at the ceremony, Bai Matarr Drammeh, president of the GCCI, said they were honoured to receive the delegation from Senegal.

“We are very serious about border issues and matters and this was why both the Immigration and Customs were present at the ceremony,” he said.

“Whenever we hit each other at the border our economy moves backwards,” he said, adding: “There should be free movement of people, goods and services within the region. For us to be able to participate globally we most come together as one.”

He also said that without trading with each other “poverty level will remain high”.

Mr Drammeh, who was recently elected president of the Federation of the West African Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FEWACCI), also thanked the representative of the Senegalese ambassador and the whole delegation for gracing the occasion.

“We have landlocked countries within the ECOWAS and for them to be comfortable we have to come together as one,” he remarked, adding that if goods are coming from Senegal and get stuck on the way for a long period then they arrive to their final destination their prizes will increase.

“We cannot integrate if we are not friends and it is us that have to start and our governments follow but we have to do this through dialogue,” he said, adding that FEWACCI is working at creating a sea link to clear the way for business and trade to flourish within the region.

“It is time we trade among ourselves” he said. “We cannot continue exporting our goods because we are losing; it is time we accept each other, respect the agreement we sign and integrate. No small country can compete tomorrow.”

Jean Pascal Ehemba, president of the Ziguinchor Chamber of Commerce and Industry, highlighted the relationship between The Gambia and Senegal as well as the objectives of his chamber.

Elhadji Malick Diallo, representative of the Senegalese ambassador, said he is always proud to be associated with such important gatherings, adding that he was also pleased with the step taken by the two sister chambers.

Pansaw Nyassi, GCCI Business Development Officer, said the world has become a village and that we have to work together for the development of our countries.

“We are looking at how we can share income and market information, how to facilitate the movement of members freely within the two countries without harassment and other things,” he added.