BUCHANAN, Grand Bassa – Grand Bassa has hosted a trade and investment conferenced aimed at attracting national and international investors to the county.
The conference was held from Thursday to Saturday and was organized by Grand Bassa’s Sen. Jonathan Kaipay, who said the conference’s goal was to showcase the investment potential of the county in sectors such as mining, forestry, tourism, energy, and general agriculture.
He also assured the investors that under the government’s Pro-Poor Agenda, Grand Bassa was ready for development.
Kaipay said more than 10 international companies with over 40 delegates from the U.S., Spain, Norway, Ghana, Nigeria, Ivory Coast, and Kenya were attending the conference, the first of its kind in the county.
Commerce Minister Wilson Tarpeh, who served as a proxy for President George Weah, made the opening statements at the conference.
He said Liberia had three key requirements for a good investment environment – political stability, the existence of the rule of law, and predictability. He said the country was ready to provide an enabling environment for investment.
Tarpeh told the gathering that Grand Bassa is strategically situated to attract investments in many of Liberia’s key sectors. He listed ways in which the county had already played meaningful roles in the growth and development of Liberia, explaining that, for the last 40 years, Grand Bassa produced close to 39 percent of Liberia’s gross domestic product.
“In fact, at some point in time, Grand Bassa County was producing about 53-54 percent to the Gross Domestic Product when [the Liberian-American-Swedish Mining Company] and other companies were here,” Tarpeh said.
He also called on the investors to bring onboard Liberians as a mean of providing strategic security and stability in their investment.
Grand Bassa has been a host to major companies operating in the country, including the Oriental Timber Company, Buchanan Renewables Energy, and the Liberian-American-Swedish Mining Company.
Companies such as the mining giant ArcelorMittal, the Liberia Agricultural Company, and Equatorial Palm Oil continue to operate in the county. However, the overall scarcity of jobs in the country and the county has increased appetites for more investment.
Residents of Grand Bassa seemed excited about the trade and investment conference, with many expressing hope that the presentations would materialize into concrete investments.
The supreme grand zoe of Grand Bassa, Edward Garmah, said he welcomed the conference, and as the top traditional leader in the county, he pledged the traditional community’s commitment to cooperating with any investor in the county.
Grand Bassa’s superintendent, Janjay Baikeh, also assured the investors that the county would work along with potential investors to improve the livelihood of the people. He said Grand Bassa’s doors were open to all investors.
The conference was sponsored by Orange, ArcelorMittal, Equatorial Palm Oil, Hotel Buchanan, and the Farmington Hotel.
Featured photo by Sampson David