Jun 30, 2011, 11:43 AM
The Gambia government through the Ministry of Trade, Industry, Regional Integration and Employment (MoTIE) will introduce a new trade policy geared towards the protection of consumers.
Come 1st April this year, about a week from today, an annual licensing system for the importation, distribution and retailing of essential food commodities will be introduced and made mandatory for all merchants involved in such businesses or trade.
“The initiative is part of measures to implement the trade policy for the protection of consumers,” a press release by the Trade minister stated.
According to the release, the essential food commodities include rice, sugar, milk, flour, agro oil, tomato paste, onion, potatoes, and whole chicken and chicken legs.
“All importers, distributors and major retailers of essential food commodities operating within the domestic market are required to obtain the application form and acquire a licence from the Ministry of Trade, Industry, Regional Integration and Employment,” the release added.
It stated further that minor retailers of essential food commodities operating within the domestic market should apply for and acquire authorization from their respective regional government authorities.
“This annual licence system does not apply to businesses, agents and individuals, but are exclusively involving the transit and re-export trade of essential food commodities,” the release further stated, adding that all such licences are “free of charge”, and can be applied for at the Trade ministry.