Handicraft producers and musicians in Cabo Verde could be better integrated into the tourism value chain, according to reports submitted by UNCTAD and UN partners to the government of the island nation. The current tourism model has generated impressive growth, but it has not sufficiently made use of the country's rich culture and people's skills and talents.
The reports highlighted several government initiatives such as the Casas de Cultura and Casas de Artes, which could provide venues for artisans to be trained to produce appropriate handicrafts, as well as a centre for the collection, certification and retailing of cultural works and products with the "Made in Cabo Verde" label.
The extraordinarily rich history of music in Cabo Verde and its many festivals offer an avenue to diversify the tourism sector, the reports concluded. The recommendations underlined the need to promote local events with relevant stakeholders, and particularly to invest in infrastructure for accommodation, food and transport that can receive a higher number of tourists outside main tourist destinations, and match their needs.
It is expected that the findings of the reports will be presented at a conference on sustainable tourism development and creative economies in Africa to be held on the island of Sal in Cabo Verde in May, and that the reports will serve as inputs for the formulation of an Enhanced Integrated Framework (EIF) project proposal.
UNCTAD, in collaboration with the Executive Secretariat of the EIF, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the UN Resident Coordinator in Cabo Verde submitted three reports to the government as part of the "Delivering as One" United Nations initiative.
The reports were written in response to a request from the Prime Minister of Cabo Verde, Mr. José María Pereira Neves, with the support of the Minister of Culture, Mr. Mario Lucio Matias de Sousa Mendes, the Minister of Tourism, Industry and Energy, Mr. Humberto Brito, and the Director General of Tourism, Mr. Emanuel Almeida.
UNCTAD recently organized an ad hoc expert meeting in collaboration with the inter-agency Steering Committee on Tourism for Development to increase understanding on the link between tourism and the creative economy.