Ellen Submits US$50M Loan Agreement to Upgrade RIA Facilities

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President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf has submitted a Concessional Loan Agreement to the House of Representatives to the tune of 350,000,000 Chinese Yaun, equivalent to US$50 million, for timely ratification to urgently upgrade facilities at the Roberts International Airport (RIA).

In her request to Deputy Speaker Hans M. Barchue, read in Thursday’s session, the President said the agreement is between the Government of Liberia (GOL) and the Export-Import Bank of China.

“The rate of interest applicable to the loan shall be two percent per annum, with Management Fee of zero point five percent, and the Commitment Fee shall be zero point five percent,” the President wrote.

According to the President’s letter, the maturity period for the loan shall be 240 months (an equivalent of 20 years), which includes a grace period of 84 months (equivalent to seven years), and the repayment period shall be 156 months or 13 years.

“All of the proceeds of the loan shall be used and applied solely by the GOL to pay 100 percent of the Commercial Contract amount with China Harbor Engineering Company-Liberia Limited, which is the Chinese supplier,” the President said.

The Plenary has meanwhile mandated the Committee on Ways, Means, Finance and Development Planning and Judiciary and Transport to scrutinize the Loan Facility to upgrade the expansion projects at RIA, and report on Thursday, September 29.

In a related development, the President has submitted for ratification an Investment Incentive Agreement between the GGOL and Sethi Ferro Fabrik Incorporated (the investor), a corporation duly organized and existing under the laws of Liberia.

“The investor wishes to develop a scrap metal recycling plant for the purpose of producing steel products for the domestic market and other Mano River Union (MRU) countries. This investment will provide jobs, utilize local materials, generate foreign exchange savings and contribute overall to the industrial sector of Liberia,” the President added.

The Investment Incentive Deal was sent to the Committees on Ways, Means, Finance and Development and Investment and Public Accounts, and is to report, Thursday, September 29.

Additionally, the President officially informed the House of Representatives that she will be away from the country from September 19-28 attending the 71st Session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York.

“While I am away from the Country, the Minister of National Defense, Brownie J. Samukai, will serve as Coordinator of the Cabinet in consultation with the Vice President, and in telephone consultation with me,” the President said.

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