A high-powered Chinese business delegation in the country has informed local Liberian business entrepreneurs that they are in the country to seek new partnership with them to ensure that both countries explore in agriculture, infrastructure and energy.
The visiting delegations, dubbed “2015 Sino-Liberia WIN-WIN Visit”, have been holding major discussions with stakeholders from both government and private entities since they arrived in the country last Friday, July 31.
Addressing over 50 local business people yesterday, August 3, at the Liberia Chamber of Commerce (LCC) in Monrovia, the head of the Chinese delegation, Yang Zhan Qing said that their visit to Liberia is to explore new opportunities in the Liberian economy by collaborating with the Liberians businesspeople here.
Mr. Qing indicated that his delegation have first class companies, very strong not only in china but globally. He expressed the hope that their visit will help explore Liberian businesses in China.
He however expressed optimism that both Liberia and China will work to achieve their business goals and objectives.
Earlier in his welcome remarks, president of the Liberia Chamber of Commerce Dr. Francis A. Dennis, Jr., described the visit of the Chinese delegation as “timely, particularly under the theme, and mission to find WIN-WIN investment opportunities.
“We thank our government for arranging this link with the private sector. And on our part we shall use this window of partnership to strengthen our position in existing markets and develop our dormant potential.”
Dr. Dennis said over the last 50 years China has grown to become the leader in global trade, additionally, trade with Africa.
He recalled that China exports to Africa increased significantly from US$37.3 billion to US$73.1 billion between 2007 and 2011, while imports from Africa increased from US$36.4 billion up to US$93.2 billion.
Mr. Dennis also indicated during the period 2005-2010, China Direct Investment in Sub-Sahara Africa was 13.8 percent of its total Foreign Investment more than Europe, Australia or USA.
“It therefore, makes perfect sense that we partner and learn from one that has a proven track record of phenomenal growth and transformation, to spur our private sector initiatives to reach middle-income status by 2030,” he told the participants.
Mr. Dennis also believes that the WIN-WIN approach must achieve at least two key objectives, namely: “Decent and Sustainable Jobs – this improves livelihoods. And sustainable jobs means predictable cash flows for financing business grow and acquiring personal assets.”
The second key objective involves linkages to economic base and natural resources – these provide opportunities for value addition, and economic inclusion by means of scalable investment size e.g. rubber, fruits, vegetable and livestock, he said.
In order to create a win-win investment portfolio in Liberia, the president of the LCC strongly suggested that more attention should be given to agriculture, agro-industry, forestry, animal husbandry and fishery
“We wish our business guest and participants a very successful meeting that shall generate WIN-WIN investments,” he said.
The Chinese delegation, accompanied by Liberia’s Ambassador accredited near Beijing, D. McKinley Thomas, said the delegations comprised of major Chinese companies that come to seek opportunity in some of the infrastructure and development of Liberia as well as forming new partnership in agriculture and other area of interest.
According to Amb. DM Thomas, plans are already underway for a return version of the Sino-Liberia Win-Win visit by Liberian businesses to China.
Amb. Thomas stated that the visit shows that the cordial ties that exist between Liberia and China are strong.
He disclosed that the Chinese companies will be desirous of investing in the Liberian economy including doing general businesses and government’s infrastructural development programs.
Also speaking, member from the Liberia Business Associations (LBA) who proxy on behalf of Dee-Maxwell Kemayah called on the Chinese Business delegation for strong partnership between both countries.
The LIBA representative said Liberian priority right now is in agriculture, because agriculture plays a major role in the economics of a nation.
For her part, chairperson of the National Investment Commission Etmonia D. Tarpeh thanked the delegation for the visit and hope for more cooperation between the two countries.
Chinese companies that are a part of the visiting delegation come from the mining, power and high tech sectors.
Other companies forming a part of the delegation include China Railway Material, and Sino-Tech Minerals, power China (BEC), Hydro China, and China Harbor Engineering Co; Ginko Engineering Co. Ltd., Sino-German Engineering Co and SEPCO III Power Construction and Heknan Jingyuan Guoye as well as the Shandong Exit Secure Network Technology Co.