The Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Trade, Industry, Regional Integration and Employment (MOTIE) Naffie Barry has affirmed that establishing data on labor and employment is a priority to the government of the Gambia. This, she said is because the availability of labor and employment data support the government in informed policy formulation and decision making for employment promotion and social economic development in general.
Naffie Barry was speaking during the launching ceremony of The Gambia Labor Force Survey (LFS) and Gambia Labor Market Information System (LMIS) held at the Coco Ocean Hotel in the city of Bijilo. The launching was organized by the Ministry of Trade, Industry, regional Integration and Employment (MOTIE) in collaboration with The Gambia Bureau of Statistics (GBoS).
GBoS conducted the Labor Force Survey (LFS) in 2012 through The Gambia Priority Employment Program (GAMJOBs) and the main purpose of the LFS was to provide stakeholders and Gambia government with labor market and employment information on unemployment and other related indicators for informed policy formulation and decision-making in employment promotion and socio-economic development in general.
Through mainly data from the LFS report, MOTIE developed a Labor Market Information System (LMIS) that aims to provide labor market analyses that are useful for the formulation and implementation of labor policies, migration, projects and programs to promote employment. Whiles the Labor Market information System (LMIS) is web based resources bank where employment and labor information can be accessed.
Naffie Barry stated that the Government of The Gambia continues to place employment creation as a central objective of the government economic and social policies for sustainable poverty alleviation adding that it is this policy objective that informed the formulation and implementation of “Program for Accelerated Growth and Employment” (PAGE), which has the overall objective of enhancing growth and broad based employment generation.
The Trade Perm Sec indicated that there is need to address the problem of information gaps on the labor market to enhance the formulation and implementation of employment policies. She noted that her ministry is working to establish a comprehensive Labor Market Information Data Base to provide reliable labor market information to support The Gambia’s development process.
In support of this initiatives, Barry said, the government of The Gambia through MOTIE, UNDP and GAMJOBS has commissioned a Labor Force Survey through The Gambia Bureau of Statistics (GBoS) adding that the LFS was undertaken in the year 2012 and the survey report was officially available for use in March 2015 and this has made it possible for them to officially launched the LMIS.
She assured that her ministry would continue to collaborate with development partners to strengthen the capacities of the staff of MOTIE, GBoS, and other relevant stakeholders with the requisite skills for data analysis and dissemination of labor information.
The director of Economic Division at GBoS Ousman Dibba said that the Labor Force Survey (LFS) is widely used to collect and disseminate labor statistics locally and internationally. The study tools and analytical methods used were based on International Labor Organization (ILO) prototypes and standards designed to facilitate comparison within and across countries and regions.
Dibba on behalf of The Gambia government thanked the United Nation Development Program (UNDP) and the Spanish government for making the resources available for this important study, while assuring that their bureau will continue to produce labor statistics to meet the growing demand for such if resources are available.
While presenting on Gambia’s Labor Market Information System (LMIS), Mamadi Dampha said that the GLMIS will support the government and its social partners to develop an informed policy on employment in promoting opportunities for the provision of decent and productive work, in conditions of freedom of association, equity, security and human dignity and to quality social and economic benefits for all.