The Gambia OIC Secretariat last week concluded a three-day virtual training course for thirty-five (35) participants drawn from the tourism and hospitality industry in The Gambia.
The tourism and hospitality service training course was implemented in partnership with the Statistical, Economic and Social Research and Training Centre for Islamic Countries (SESRIC) – the scientific research agency of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation.
The training is an integral part of OICGambia’s Youth and Women Empowerment Programme, which is aimed at enhancing the technical skills and competencies of women and young people.
Speaking at the opening ceremony, the Chief Executive Officer of The Gambia OIC Secretariat, Mr. Yankuba Dibba said the capacity building programme is an important cornerstone of the Secretariat’s capacity building programme as well as the National Development Plan.
“Anything geared towards enhancing the industry and building the capacities of youths who constitute a significant percentage of the population is laudable’’, Dibba stated.
CEO Dibba touched on the importance of tourism to the GDP of the country especially at a time when countries the world over are recovering from the effects of the COVID19 pandemic.
“The projected GDP before COVID for last year was in the region of 5.3% but with COVID, it has gone under 3%. So, we all know the negative impact this will have on the general population. As part of our overall aim at the Secretariat, we want to leverage on the Summit to build the necessary capacities to transform Gambia to another level,” he said.
The Director General of the Statistical, Economic and Social Research and Training Centre for Islamic Countries (SESRIC), Hon. Nebil Dabur harped on the critical role of tourism in the economy of developing countries including the OIC member countries.
“It is of utmost importance that the OIC countries develop new strategies towards upgrading the quality of their tourism services, to learning, exchanging experiences and best practices. This will help them to compete with their counterparts at the global level,” he posited, adding that the industry is an important source of foreign exchange, economic growth, and employment.
The three-day training is expected to enhance the technical skills and competencies of tourism and hospitality training providers as well as familiarize them with global standards, practices and trends in the tourism and hospitality service. It followed a similar training on business development and entrepreneurship and protocol services.
Source: OICGambia Secretariat