The minister of Tourism and Culture, Hamas Bah, has said Thomas Cook’s collapsed on Sunday night will have a “negative impact” on The Gambia’s economy.

Mr. Bah said his ministry had taken “measures” to counter the negative impact it might have on the country’s economy.

“It will be of a big shock to our economy, but as a government we have been taking some proactive measures well before it happened, and we believe that the Gambian government has acted couple of weeks ago to find ways (in which) we can mitigate whatever shock it may have on the economy.”

He said the impact will be felt in the tourism sector adding that Thomas Cook brought in at least 67,000 tourists in the country last year and that “to be honest they were bringing in almost 40% of our tourists between Britain and northern Europe.”

However, the minister said they were surprised that the travel firm was allowed to collapse, adding that “for the authorities in Britain to let it go burst, really it wasn’t a thing we expected. We thought somehow there will be a solution, a rescue (plan) for Thomas Cook”.

Mr. Bah said the government has taken steps to finding solutions to the issue, adding that “those plans are ahead and we are working on them as soon as possible. We will certainly get something done, because we have already started (working on the plan)”.

The collapse of Thomas Cook, the United Kingdom’s oldest and biggest tour operator, which flies more than 50 per cent of British tourists to the Gambia, has sparked fears of economic slowdown in the tourism sector. A third of The Gambia’s economy depends on the tourism industry.

At least 9000 jobs in Britain and 21,000 jobs outside Britain are expected to be lost as a result of the collapsed of the Thomas Cook Group.

Reporting by Adama Makasuba

One Comment

  1. AvatarMargaret Riley says:

    Hope we have manchester flights ..been voming gambia f 20yrs ..so sad…

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