Thursday, November 10, 2011

Heavy Tax Burden, Imported Goods Killing Local Industries

The heavy tax burden on local manufacturing companies in The Gambia and the dumping of cheap imported goods in the country is ravaging and virtually killing the local industry, manufacturers in the country have lamented.

Taxes are a big burden on local manufacturers in The Gambia
Some member companies of the Gambia Manufacturers Association (GMA) told Gambia News Online that the number of taxes imposed on them is enough to put them out of business, especially at a time when they have very low sales as they find it very difficult for their locally produced goods to find a mark in the country’s market which is flooded with imported goods at a cheaper price than locally produced ones. 

“The key issue affecting Gambian manufacturing companies is the heavy tax and the stiff competition from the imported goods,” said Saja Sambou of Gambega, a member company of Gambia Manufacturers Association (GMA). 

“We are paying so many taxes, and electricity cost is also high. In light of all this we face very intense competition from Brand B products.  By Brand B products, I mean imported goods; products that are being produced locally and a similar product is imported from somewhere and dumped into the market at cheap price.” 

Gambia’s economic growth slows down

The growth of The Gambia’s economy is projected to slow down from 6.1% in 2010 to 5.5% in 2011, according to the Central Bank of The Gambia.

The Gambia economy is experiencing increasing budget deficit as the government continues to spend more than its revenue. 

CBG Governor, Amadou Colley
According to the latest quarterly monetary report of the Central Bank of The Gambia (CBG), the deficit of the government has increased by almost D200 million.   CBG Governor Amadou Kolley said the overall budget balance, including grants, on commitment basis was a deficit of D714.50 million.  This is equivalent to 2.2 per cent of the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and it is higher than a deficit of D530 equivalent to 1.8% of GDP in the corresponding year in 2010.

GDP is the total monetary value of all goods and services produced domestically in the country over a specified period.  The growth of GDP from one period to another is an indication of how healthy the country's economy is.

New Secured Ecowas Brown Card Takes Effect January 2012

Gambian motorists and travellers to Senegal and other West African countries have been called upon to take note of the newly updated and secured version of the ECOWAS Brown Card, which will come into effect on 1 January 2012, the Gambia National Bureau of the ECOWAS Brown card Insurance Scheme has stated.

Front Face of the New Secured Brown Card
The ECOWAS Brown Card allows the free movement of people and goods within the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS).  The card provides compensation to victims of motor vehicle accidents, which may occur while travelling within the ECOWAS sub-region.  It also provides insurance cover for third-party liability risks relating to accidents resulting in death and /or bodily injury and property damage.

Back Side of the New Secured Card
According to Henry Jawo, secretary general of the Gambia National Bureau of the ECOWAS Brown Card Insurance Scheme, the rationale behind the introduction of the new card is because the old card was easily being forged, as many instances fake card have been discovered in the region. This necessitated the introduction of a new card with improved security features.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011


Mr Dunn
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank (WB) diligently carried out a ‘Debt Sustainability Analyses (DSA)’ that has cautioned the trend in which the economy and financial system of the country is faring.

The DSA is a formal framework developed by the IMF for conducting public and external debt sustainability analysis as a tool to better detect, prevent, and resolve potential crises. It looks at the evolutions of government debt over the next twenty years and it is based on long-ranged projections of government borrowing needs.

According to David Dunn, Chief of IMF mission to The Gambia, “The Gambia is classified as being high risk of debt distress at the moment based on a debt sustainability analyses by the IMF and WB.”