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Responsible Tourism by Harold Goodwin

Resilience in West Africa

The Gambia in West Africa closed it borders for nearly a year to keep Covid out. Adama Bah discusses how the people fared. It is clear that with remittances from the Gambian diaspora amounting to nearly 60% of GDP during the Covid lockdowns and a strong sense of responsibility for the welfare of all within the family The Gambia has proved very resilient. Tourism is 20% of the economy in normal times, closing their borders to fend off Covid cost the country dear. The Gambia survived and recovered from the coup and travel bans in 1994, Ebola in West Africa in 2014 and most recently Covid.

13% of the population are now fully vaccinated and they have not yet passed 365 deaths. The Gambia has reopened for tourism with 30% occupancy. But most of those coming are repeat visitors which means that they do not spend much on craft

The Gambia is a culturally and socially rich country despite the low level of income per head. Resilience in The Gambia is based on the closely knit family and the extended family system. Everyone is their others brothers’ and sisters’ keeper and that obligation continues with the diaspora, the emigres are expected to contribute to their immediate and extended family.

As the African proverb goes it takes a whole village to bring up a child

At WTM Africa we are discussing how to make tourism businesses and destinations more resilient.

Tuesday 12th April 15:45-16:15 Investment for Responsible Tourism & Resilience

Development banks, commercial banks and private investors all have a role to play in financing tourism. Hermione Nevill, from the International Finance Corporation, will take a destination-lens to explore some of the financing mechanisms in play, and how they are changing in the context of recovery in Africa. There will be a presentation about what the IFC is doing and an opportunity for Q&A.

Moderator: Harold Goodwin, WTM Responsible Tourism Advisor

Hermione Nevill,  Senior Tourism Specialist at World Bank Group

Tuesday 12th April 16:15-17:00 We need to Increase Our Resilience

The Covid pandemic has demonstrated the vulnerability of our industry to travel bans and fear. Cape Town was not the first destination to suffer from severe drought and a large reduction in arrivals – and it will not be the last. What can businesses and destinations do to increase their resilience? What can you do? What do you need to do?

Moderator: Harold Goodwin, WTM Responsible Tourism Advisor

Lee-Anne Bac, Director, Strategic Development and Advisory

Simon Blackburn Sustainability Director, African Safari Collective

Gareth Morgan, Acting Executive Director: Future Planning and Resilience City of Cape Town |

Hermione Nevill,  Senior Tourism Specialist at World Bank Group

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