-Says PATEL’s communication spokesperson, Caesar Morris
Caesar Morris, chief communication officer of the Patriotic Entrepreneurs of Liberia (PATEL), has indicated that the recent US$3 million loan scheme, which was launched by President George Weah, is not a political show. He said it is intended to help develop the private sector and give a boost to government’s economic development drive.
Morris suggested that there should be a legal requirement that a business should be at least 12 months old. He explained that businesses that could not pay previous loans should not be given this allowance because they would not pay back; and businesses must be tax compliance.
Morris made these remarks on Monday, December 20, 2018, in an interview with the Daily Observer via mobile phone in Monrovia.
He said most of all, there should be a quarterly report on the performance of this Pro-Poor Loan Scheme so as to monitor the progress. PATEL chief for communication used the occasion to commend President George Weah for launching such an initiative.
“This is a positive step to the sustainable development of Liberia. If managed well, this initiative will have a national impact across Small Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and the government,” he declared.
According to him, President Weah must be commended for the passion he has shown for Liberian businesses to take charge of their own economy.
He said the private sector does not just run business; it creates businesses and jobs that contribute in taxes to the government for economic development.
Morris said, “Giving businesses money is a good thing and should be the basis to creating an enabling environment, a level playing field for a fair market.”
He further observed that most of their foreign counterparts marginalize in multiple forms and shapes, which eventually undermine and kill Liberian businesses.
Morris said if Liberians are to no longer be spectators in their own country, they should have a privilege in their economy and not the other way round.
He lamented that it is time the CDC-led government legislate the Liberian Business Economic Empowerment Act, thereby creating an enabling environment and space for Liberian businesses to dominate and not be a spectator.
He said if the Pro-Poor Loan Scheme is to work, the Ministry of Commerce (MoC) and the Liberia Bank for Development and Investment (LBDI) must treat it as other loans but at a special, lower rate and better repayment plan.