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artisan selling fabriques at the craft market

Local markets are generally my favourites where to buy food and souvenirs when I am visiting a place, the reasons for my choice are several:

  • the food is genuine and  tasty,
  • the souvenirs from the market are more likely connected with the local culture and tradition 
  • all the money spent goes directly to the local community  helping the local economy

Apparently, the government of Gambia agrees and believes in craft markets to lead the country to sustainable development and more sustainable tourism. 

sustainable development - craft artisan at the market - The Gambia

Craft markets value and better collaboration were among other reasons that called for the formulation of the Craft Market Federation that brought them together under one umbrella. It was initiated by the various craft market associations in the hospitality industry. This is because collectively they will be able to work together and tackle any challenge that comes the way of any of the member association.

Being under one umbrella, it is an opportunity for them to gain more from each other in terms of uplifting their general knowledge, welfare, entrepreneurial skills, hence craft market vendors consist of woodcarvers, finishers, producers, and sellers among other skilful members.

The Craft Market Federation takes a step further..  read more here 


In my opinion, the result of this collaboration is already positive, the Gambia has decided to take advantage of the tourism sector and to use it to grow and diversify the local economy. The Gambia has found the best way to promote local arts and culture as well as create a personalised tourism offer, even if this cannot be the only solution for all the serious problems this African state has, it can be considered one of the paths to follow and to develop.


Today the major difficulty of the Craft Market Federation is how to break into the international market. In the next years, they want to innovate, to develop and to diversify their products.


Have you ever considered craft markets a way to diversify local economy and to lead to sustainable development? Let me know your opinion about it.


 let’s keep in touch 🙂 


Ps. Photo credits Wikipedia and