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‘Economic growth can be achieved through trade liberalization’

The Gambian Minister of Trade, Regional Integration and Employment, Abdou Kolley said on Wednesday that important gains in economic gro w th could be achieved through trade liberalization.

However, he said, other factors could determine the extent to which these opport unities could be realized.

Kolley was speaking at a high level stakeholdersâ? sensitization and the offici al launch of the Enhanced Integrated Framework (EIF) programme in Banjul, The Ga m bia.

He said in order to reap the full benefits of liberalization, huge public invest ments in infrastructure and capacity were necessary as well as donor support and

collaboration.

â?The core purpose of ‘Aid for Trade’ is to help us build trade capacities and address supply constraints so that our products can get access to international m arkets in a competitive way,â? he said.

â?With ‘Aid for Trade’, we also hope to meet our objective of diversification o f exportable products, improve our production capacities so as to take full adva n tage of improved market access opportunities,â? Kolley added.

The minister said in order to assist the implementation of the diagnostic trade integration studies (DSTIS) Action Matrix, EIF Tier 1 was approved on 15 Decembe r 2009 by the Integrated Framework Interim Board, initially for a period of three

years with a budget of US$1 million.

Kolley noted that The Gambia is one of 27 least developed countries (LDCs) to ha ve completed the diagnostic stage of DTIS, out of 50 LDCs.

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