The Minister of Commerce and Industry, Axel Marcel Addy, has urged Liberians to prioritize small business entities by purchasing Liberian-made commodities such as the country cloth and locally grown rice.
Minister Addy made the statement at a press conference over the weekend at his Ashumn Street offices in Monrovia when he addressed issues affecting Liberian-owned businesses.
He disclosed that in an effort to enhance small businesses in the country, the Ministry is working to ensure the effectiveness of the Small Business Empowerment Act (SBEA).
The SBEA is part of government’s effort and commitment to help promote and foster the development of micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSME) in the country.
The Act also provides the mandate required by government through the Ministry to ensure that MSMEs get contracts from each government agency.
This Act allows MSMEs to receive support through various means that would strengthen their ability to compete in the private sector both in Liberia and outside the country.
Minister Addy added that the success of MSMEs is fundamental to the future of the country’s economy and as such, every Liberian needs to work hard to ensure home-made commodities are featured locally.
He noted that supporting Liberian-owned businesses by both government and those in the private sector would enhance economic growth and a sustainable local trade system that will enhance the Liberianization policy.
The Commerce Minister used the opportunity to call on Liberians to support the MSME’s to ensure that the country’s economy moves forward.
According to him, the primary objective of the Act is to bring small businesses, especially Liberian-owned businesses, into the mainstream of the economy.
This, he said, will also be done through the provision of assistance by government to empower small businesses to enable them to expand.
The Commerce boss then promised to work to increase the number of MSMEs in Liberia by encouraging donors, government, and the private sector to develop innovative solutions to enhance the business environment.
He said a favorable business climate encourages the growth of MSMEs and promotes the commercialization of food value chains
Meanwhile, Minister Addy has disclosed that Liberia is making gradual progress in becoming a member of the World Trade Organization (WTO).
Minister Addy said becoming a member of the WTO will afford Liberia the opportunity to become a predictable destination for further trade and investment activities.
He said that the WTO is the only global international organization dealing with rules of trade between nations. Its main function is to ensure that trade flows as smoothly, predictably, and freely as possible.