The Managing Director of TOTAL Liberia Inc. has challenged employees, young dealers and contracted transporters to double their efforts and maintain the service and the quality of products enjoyed by customers. Mr. Robert Fenech observed that the employees, young dealers and transporters needed to work more honestly and transparently and pay back to Liberia the investment TOTAL has made in them.
“Our subcontracted transporters also need to start taking the business seriously and deliver the correct quantities of fuel to service stations on time and safely so that our customers know that they (customers) can buy fuel on TOTAL service stations at any time,” he said.
Speaking at the opening ceremony of TOTAL Liberia Inc.’s 23rd Service Station at Smyth Road Junction on the Old Road on Saturday, Mr. Fenech assured the public that TOTAL Liberia fully supports and encourages the full use of all powers available to the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, and the highest punitive actions, if any TOTAL Franchise Dealer is found to be selling fuel higher than the price ceiling in force or to be cheating the customers on quantities sold. In a prepared speech delivered at the ceremony, the TOTAL MD reminded Liberians that TOTAL prides itself on giving its customers the right product and the right quantity at the right price.
“It is incumbent on our service station franchise operators to reach the highest levels of transparency and integrity with their customers, and to be Ambassadors of the TOTAL brand,” he stated.
He said TOTAL has made great strides in developing a socially sustainable and economic footprint throughout Liberia in support of the President’s poverty reduction program. According to Mr. Fenech, the opening of the Old Road Service Station under the T-AIR concept is another example of the company’s preparedness to support President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf’s poverty reduction program. The British petroleum manager declared that TOTAL will continue to invest in all counties, in line with the tenants of the Agenda for Transformation (AfT), targeting approximately five new service stations projects per year.
Fenech intoned that the need for job creation in Liberia and the need to empower Liberians in a sustainable manner cannot be overstated.
“TOTAL,” he said “has opened four new service stations this year including a service station in Greenville and another T-AIR service station in Gbarnga, Bong County.” The new TOTAL T-AIR service station is valued at US$1 million and provides services to all vehicles.
The service station is endowed with a special service center for motorbikes, a lube bay, and TOTAL’s usual modern shopping mall, amongst others.
TOTAL has invested over US$23 million to construct 23 service stations in eight counties. All of TOTAL’s service stations are exclusively operated by Liberian franchise businesses, the majority of which, according to Mr. Fenech, operate under the Young Dealer scheme, a scheme he described as “an unparalleled commercial empowerment program for Liberians.”
To date, TOTAL has invested over US$2 million in these Liberian entrepreneurs. Fenech boasted that the track record of Total in Liberia is unparalleled, noting “our service stations costing US$1 million each are built to the highest quality and standards, respecting the most current international norms.” He noted that the new T-AIR stations endow Total with added legitimacy when it talks about sustainable development, corporate social responsibility and public acceptance of its activities.
For his part, the chief of staff from Vice President Joseph Boakai’s office, Mr. Samuel A. Stevquoah, thanked the Management of TOTAL Liberia for choosing to invest in Liberia. Mr. Stevquoah observed that the petroleum dealer market has improved since TOTAL came to Liberia over five years ago.
Speaking on behalf of the Vice President, Mr. Stevquoah noted that the government of Liberia considers TOTAL as an integral part of job creation in Liberia. He assured the business community that the government will continue to create the environment that will spur businesses and to enhance the development of Liberia.
Ecobank Managing Director Mr. Kola Adeleke, as well as the French Ambassador to Liberia Joel Godeau, joined a host of government officials to grace the opening ceremony of TOTAL’s T-AIR Service Station on the Old Road.