Home Economy Liberian Businesses Reject US$250,000 …From Draft NB; Says ‘Allotment Is To Keep Liberians Poor, Foreigners Rich’

Liberian Businesses Reject US$250,000 …From Draft NB; Says ‘Allotment Is To Keep Liberians Poor, Foreigners Rich’

by newsmanager

By: Frank P. Martin

MONROVIA: The Chair of Trade and Commerce at the Liberia Business Association, Dominic Nimely, has told the administration of President Joseph Nyuma Boakai to increase the US$250,000 it allotted to the Liberian Business Community in the 2024 draft National Budget to US$50 million.

Nimely, who is also Chair of the Patriotic Entrepreneurs of Liberia (PATEL), said such amount allotted in the draft national budget by the Executive Branch of Government is “a slap in the face of the Liberian business owners who struggle daily to access loads from commercial banks for investment purposes.”

He alleged that the Boakai led government’s decision to apportion US$250,000.00 to the Liberian Business Community is intended “to strangulate local Liberian businesses and empower foreign businesses.”

He indicated that Liberian businesses are “disadvantaged” as result of the poor effectuation of the “Liberization Policy,” which set aside certain businesses exclusively for Liberians.

“I don’t want to be xenophobic, but we have to face the reality on the grounds that continues to make our people poor and make foreigners rich in our country. It baffles me when I see the Chinese, Indians and other nationals minding and selling sands to Liberians in their own land. One reason is our leaders have outsold our rights to foreigners and this ugly and bad behavior has to stop in Liberia, especially under this government that Liberians believe will change the narrative of governance,” Nimely told Journalists at his office in Jallah Town in Monrovia.

The PATEL Chair maintained that the money allotted for the Liberian business community can’t organize business programs that would attract international investments into the country.

“We have been in other countries, where governments respect local business leaders. Those countries allow business leaders to make input on business issues for the purpose of trade and commerce and for the economic stability of those countries. But, it is unfortunate that this government has forgotten to know that this country can never progress without the intervention of the country’s local business owners. No foreigner will build Liberia for us; it is Liberians themselves who have to build Liberia. Things foreign business owners doing here is to steal from our economy,” he disclosed.

Speaking to Journalists on Monday, April 8, 2024, he called on the Legislative Branch of Government, where the draft national budget has been sent for scrutiny, to increase the $25,000.00 to 50 million.

He said this will lead to the empowerment of Liberian business to compete with foreign business owners who have denied Liberians the economic rights due to their financial influence.

“Mr. President, Vice President, Speaker, and Pro-Tempore, we are appealing to you to see reason to increase the budget so Liberians can be seen in their own economy instead of being spectators,” he noted.

Nimely’s statement comes on the heed of President Boakai’s Commerce and Industry Minister, Amin Modad, threat to resign if he does not get the requisite support, through the political will of the president and the financial and moral support of his cabinet colleagues, to implement the programs and overall vision of his ministry.

He expressed his disappointment over the allocation of US$256,000 in the 2024 budget to support Liberian businesses, which he described as a “drop in an ocean.”

He maintained that the allocation contravenes his efforts to drive forward the government’s agenda, particularly in small business empowerment.

He emphasized the importance of cohesive support from both the President Boakai and the legislature to effectively implement the ministry’s agenda and programs that will benefit the country’s small business sector.

Related Posts

Leave a Comment