One of South Africa’s leading Chef’s, Pete Goffe-Wood, has charged the youth in Ghana and across the continent to position themselves for careers in the tourism value chain, ahead of the implementation of the Africa Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) Agreement.
The AfCFTA which 54 of the 55 African nations have signed onto, makes Africa the world’s largest free trade area since the formation of the World Trade Organisation, and will cover a market of 1.2 billion people.
For many stakeholders some of the key area that would see a boost as a result of the implementation of the pact are the tourism and hospitality sectors.
Despite the obvious opportunities, many also speak of the growing size of the youth and how that will influence the employment dynamics on the continent.
Currently, around 60% of Africa’s population is under 25 years old, and that grouping will account for twice Europe’s total population in 2100.
But speaking to Citi Business News on the issue of future employment for Africa’s youth, one of South Africa’s leading Chef’s Goffe-Wood said African youth can help in reducing the unemployment phenomena in their countries by preparing themselves for careers within the vibrant tourism and hospitality sectors.
“Feeding Africa’s growing and moving population is a huge challenge. So irrespective of whether you are starting your own small eatery or running from office to office to feed people there is a huge opportunity for young entrepreneurs. And when you look at the continents growing tourism and hospitality sectors you know the career opportunities are endless.”
Chef Goffe-Wood interacted with Citi Business News on the sidelines of the recently held 4th edition of the Wines of South Africa Sommelier Cup Final event.
The event which seeks to match the best sommeliers or wine experts across the world against each other, saw the UK’s Richelle van Gemert winning the crown as the 2019 Wines of South Africa Sommelier Cup Final champion (#WOSA_ZA).
While expressing confidence in seeing a Ghanaian in future editions of the Sommelier cup final, the Wines of South Africa Market manager for the Africa region Matome Mbatha highlighted the fact that his outfit is preparing the youth for careers in the tourism and hospitality space.
“This year’s competition had people from Zimbabwe and Kenya, and WOSA is confident that the right candidate will come out of Ghana, a market that has shown tremendous growth in wine knowledge over in recent years.
As of today, we have trained over 250 Ghanaians in different aspects of the hospitality sector and we hope the take the opportunity to build on that.”