Pres. Weah Wants to Print L$34B in New Money

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"While the decision needs to be made now to address this issue that impacts the economy, it is important to note that the printing of new banknotes will require your approval," President Weah told the Senate.

— Writes senate for “green light” 

Based on reported advice from authorities of the Central Bank of Liberia (CBL), President George Weah, has written the Senate, to authorize the printing of new local currency (money) to replace the current one.

While the communication is being circulated in the Legislature, it is reported that President Weah’s Government has already printed the amount of L$34 billion [new] money that is soon to be in circulation.

In his communication read before Senate plenary at its 64th day sitting on Thursday, September 12, 2019, President Weah informed his former colleagues (Senators) that he has received a communication from the CBL, advising that the Liberian economy may be seriously affected, due to the unaccounted local currency infused into the economy that is causing high inflation; and has recommended the printing of new local currency to replace existing ones.

“While the decision needs to be made now to address this issue that impacts the economy, it is important to note that the printing of new banknotes will require your approval, in accordance with Article 34(d) through the 1986 Constitution,” President Weah noted.

Though the CBL has not defined any set values or pattern to limit the printed amount of currency (new money), it should be enough to provide services, transfer goods and also regain the value of currency that is in circulation. 

President Weah said that, in view of Executive Governor Nathaniel Patray’s communication, he (Weah) has advised Patray to seek the opportunity “to discuss this matter with you and your appropriate committees as you will dictate. It is my fervent hope that you can agree on the way forward to enable the CBL to move in a timely manner to conclude arrangements for the printing of the [new] currency…”

By a motion from Senator Alphonso Gaye, the communication was sent to the Senate committee on Banking and Currency, chaired by Grand Gedeh Senator Marshall Dennis to appropriately advise plenary.

Meanwhile, the President’s communication did not specify to the lawmakers the amount to be printed in question, but there are reports that the amount is about L$34 billion. In fact, an insider within the hierarchy of the Senate hinted to the Daily Observer that the amount in question has already been printed, and was only awaiting the Legislature’s approval to enter the market.

The Government’s request to replace the controversial legacy currency comes as some executives of the CBL face trial for illegally printing over L$16 billion during the regime of former President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf.

27 COMMENTS

  1. A wise person once said, “He who will not economize will have to agonize.”

    If printing more money is the solution to Liberia’s economic woes, then, Liberia’s economy would be booming by now.

    It does not matter whether the President prints billions of new Liberian Dollars, it won’t fix Liberia’s broken economy. The Liberian Dollar has been drastically devalued. The current exchange rate fluctuates between LD200/208 to US $1.

    If this government continues its lavish spending and continues to print more money, it would lead to hyperinflation. The more worthless money printed, the lower the buying power of the Liberian dollar thus causing more hardships for ordinary Liberians because prices of goods would rise exponentially.

    Government fiscal mismanagement is the main cause of the economic problems in Liberia. Three fourth (3/4) of Liberia’s fiscal budget (meager budget) goes towards government payroll. Also, there are little incentives or mechanism put in place to spur economic growth in the private sector.

    When Government improves the education system; cuts down on reckless spending of high salaries/perks for top government officials; produces more output (goods) for world market; develops the right infrastructures; provides loans to small farmers/small businesses, and cut high taxes until the economy improves, then, these incentives would help spur economic growth.

    Government can lay the right foundation to help boost a strong private sector in Liberia by setting good policies: by reducing corruption; by establishing strong regulations; by providing reasonable tax rates, and by building the right infrastructures. These sensible policies would help alleviate some of the hardships in Liberia.

    However, the economic engine of a country is mostly strengthened by the private sectors which boost employment growth. This sector is currently out of the reach of most Liberians and mostly in the hands of foreign businesses.

    Mr. President, printing more money, especially a weak currency like the Liberian dollar, does not increase economic output. It only leads to hyperinflation.

    As the wise person said, “He who will not economize will have to agonize.”

    • THE COMMUNICATION DID NOT SAY TO PRINT MORE MONEY,
      BUT TO REPLACE THE DIRTY DEAL MONEY THAT IS ON THE MARKET WITH NEW NOTES.

      • @DavidSFranklinSr — If your explanation is correct, then, the idea itself is very, very silly.

        Replacing the dirty money(LD) on the market is like say; we don’t have enough money to buy food but let’s use the little money we have right now to buy new cooking pots to replace our old cooking pots — to cook our food (which we don’t have).

        I am beginning to wonder whether Oppong or his team of economics advisers do not have a Degree in Stupidity…!!

  2. I wonder what is Weah’s justification or basis for printing more money? Will it spur economic growth? Will it lower inflation? What problem is he trying to solve by printing more money? Mr. Weah needs to tell the public why printing more money is necessary.

    • What I noticed here is that we usually misquote what the president really mean or is saying. This is another example: The communication sent to the Senate is simply requesting the printing of a completely different Liberian notes to replace the “UNACCOUNTED FOR” billions of Liberian dollars that were printed by the previous government. If you will agree with me, there are 2.47 billions unaccounted for Liberian notes besides the controversial 16 billions that are presently on the Market. This amount cannot be controlled by government as government does not know who is keeping said money. This is what they are selling at the market for any rate. Some will even accept 300 to 1 USD, because this is a DIRTY DEAL MONEY.

  3. This is one fact that Liberians should accept about Weah. And it is that, he does not believe in tapping the knowledge of Liberians, who possess the actual know-how, expertise, skills, and education to move the nation forward. He made this belief clear during his pre-election campaign, when he stated before throngs of his CDC supporters that, “…Education does not build a country.”

    A strange element about this highly cherished belief of Weah that many folks seem to question though is that he, himself, holds an undergraduate and a graduate degree from DeVry as rumors circulate. Moreover, he accepted two doctorate degrees from LU and Cuttington universities even though these institutions are not equipped and do not have the accreditation to deliver such.

    Anyway, the point I am trying to make is that Liberia will remain the way it is or in fact degenerate further if Weah does not denounce his anti-education stance and start thinking about the good of the country.

    What sense does it make to print more money when the country’s economy is stagnant and when inflation is already taking away the ability of the average people to meet their basic needs and provide for the education of their children?

    Well, let’s leave this task to the wisdom of Weah. Did anyone notice my use of the phrase, “…this task?” I said this task instead of “this strategy” because according to a past presidential spokesperson of Weah, he stated during a question and answer session that the president has clearly informed the press that he does not believe in “strategy” because nobody knew the Liberian people better than he did.

    So, Weah is clearly living up to his creed.

  4. Woo, the money Ellen and UN left in the Liberian economy has finished? the guys are about to steal divide more money than the once they took already since they got in power. If Liberians are not careful the US rate will go to 300 LD to 350LD for 1usd before the printing to justify that the printing will reduce it. But instead it will increase it to 500LD to a 1USD. the president who said he is not an Economist where did he get the idea from about printing more LD. he know the impact on the economy.

    wooo from football Star to president who knew nothing about economic now in few days have the idea that printing new LD will improve the economic.

    there has not been any protest ever as compare to the next one if this printing is done where weah and his guys share the money among themselves. Even the International community will protest against weah and his guys first time in the world history. this I know they will do because Liberia or Liberian ( All govt officials) are equal to percentage. (Liberians = percentage). they must have percentage on everything in Liberia.

    when the president and all the related financial official take their cut we will have less than 2M LD put in the Liberian Economy.

    weah needs to stop talking about money business and focus on transforming the lives of people through participatory system. for example his new compound built should be given to very low income Liberians not working in any leadership positions in the government or Liberia society but with little or no income. let the funds raised be used improvement of the compound and to build more homes for common Liberia.

    leave the Liberian people money alone. I hope he is not looking=g for more money to build more compound to enrich himself.

    but Liberians have not learn lesson yet.

  5. wait, has weah or the govt pay for the Dist. # 15 candidate car that was destructed. and health care bill for those affected. woo. if not, then. more trouble is ahead. more violence. if the govt do not replaced the car, take responsibility and speak out against the fact that an attack on any Liberian is an attack on Liberia, we don’t need money printed. stop the printing. weah is looking for way so that when any happen he will not lose but have more many for himself.

    the security of the country is at stick, investor will not come to Liberia if they are not secure. Liberia need investment where Liberians will have the opportunity to work and make living.

    international Community, UN, USA, please do not allow this president to print money, stop him please before it is too late.

  6. You have made some very good points Kae. Who pays for the damages inflicted against Talia Urey and others when ample evidence implies that the president’s utterances were responsible for the unprovoked attacks?

    The president believes that he can move on with with his agenda while instigating violence and fomenting chaos in the country. And that’s what the Bible says about the idle mine? (the mind that is empty).

    It says that the idle mind is used as the devil’s instrument. If this president and his accomplices truly had the country at heart and had their minds preoccupied with the ideas that matter the most to the citizens, they would not have been conniving and using the nation’s valuable resources for planning and carrying on these deadly acts.

    The president fails to realize that violence will eventually beget violence. It’s sad!

  7. My fellow Liberians, let’s remember Zimbabwe!!… At the height of that Country’s Inflation, an entire suitcase-of “their-money” was required to buy a mare-loaf of bread. The ONLY purpose for printing new-currency, in Liberia, at this critical economic juncture, should be to replace old, worn, dirty and otherwise defaced currency,…period!!
    Here is a simple analogy;….
    Ordering a box of additional Checks, from your Bank, absent the funds, in your account, to cover the Checks, makes zero sense!! An economic Abyss awaits you. “A HINT TO THE WISE….”
    When will WE LEARN My People??

  8. We know that changing the currency is laudable. But the GOL has to have a fixed rate before the introduction of the new currency in order to prevent hyperinflation. Those who have hoarded millions will start a rush to change all their hoards of cash. CBL has to be very vigilant.

  9. It is about high time. Take the ill gotten money off the market…Bring some sanity to our monetary market cautiously and judiciously …

  10. The president of Liberia statement make mr wonder who is/are his financial advisers because Liberia is a hair away from having the world most useless currency, sooner or later liberians will need a truck load of thier currency to buy a half loaf of bread , smh, somebody need to talk to weah csuse he’s about to be label the world most incompetent president of the century ..

  11. Lets go back to the US dollars where we started from.it is so much of confusion with the money issue. How many currency we have had so ce Doe time or after Tolbert death? It’s a dame shame

  12. Gentlemen, the content of the President’s communication to the Liberian Senate which I read is crystal clear and comprehensive. The communication clearly talks about printing “NEW” currency and not “ADDITIONAL or MORE” currency. So, there’s no need for any argument or contradiction as it relates to the President’s communication sent to the Senate on the printing of Liberian currency which I think is good and necessary based on the reasons provided by the government through the Central Bank of Liberia. It will be very difficult to control and/or regulate exchange rate when the government through the Central Bank doesn’t know the total amount of monies that are currently circulating on the Liberian market especially with the controversial influx of new bank notes recently printed by the Ellen regime that is parading the commercial corridors of the Liberian market with absolutely no control. Another good reason for the printing of “NEW” Liberian currency has to do with the issue of Money Laundry which is an illegal act currently taking place in Liberia by both individuals and illegal and non-existing business entities. However, our prayer for Liberia is for visible change and make significant progress in terms of good living standard for our people and infrastructural development.

    • Well said.

      It would seem that a lot of people on here haven’t either read or understood the original article.

      The driving force behind this is the GOL wishing to remove fraudulent / counterfeited bank notes from out of the Liberian economy.

      To enable this, the GOL print a stack of new styled bank notes and pass these to the banks.

      People take their tatty old worn-out bank notes to the banks and therein replace them with an equivalent value amount of the new styled bank notes.

      In the process of swapping the old bank notes for new styled bank notes, the bank staff confirm whether the old notes are legitimate or fraudulent / counterfeit. Needless to say, the banks won’t be handing over new legitimate bank notes for fraudulent / counterfeit ones; and one would also guess that not too many criminals are either bold or stupid enough to enter a bank waving a handful of fraudulent / counterfeited bank notes and therein attempt to change them?!

      Eventually all the old (but legitimate) notes are replaced with the equivalent value amount of new style bank notes, leaving any fraudulent / counterfeited notes unusable and therein removed from the economy, as people will want the new styled bank notes in preference to the old and possibly fraudulent / counterfeit ones.

  13. President Dr.Weah Sir; printing “New Liberian Dollars” is not the solution to Liberia’s Economic Woes. That is the equivalent of “putting the same old wine in a new bottle.” It won’t change the flavor. Worst yet, you are requesting for(new) “L$34,000,000,000(L$Thirty Four Billions) to be printed and perhaps be circulation??? Certainly Sir, that’s a “RECIPE” for “HYPER INFLATION RATE”, unlike any other ever known in Liberia. Liberia’s current exchange rate will double instantly and will continue to climb further. *Best solution is to phase out the worth-less Liberian Dollar. We already have dual currencies-The U.S$ and L$. It won’t hurt to eliminate the very weak Liberian Dollar; at least for a time been until… Bet! just by phasing out the very weak Liberian Dollar, you will instantly attract much needed foreign investments. Foreign Investors and Liberia’s[OWN] business people will have some levels of confidence. No one feels comfortable doing a “FOR PROFITS BUSINESS” in a Country-Liberia, where the local currency is not stable. Profits mafe today, may be wiped-
    out tomorrow; as the exchange rate keeps rising against the Liberian Dollar. Liberia’s Economic Relations to the United States must be restored and strengthened; just as we once had. It was a “TERRIBLE MISTAKE”, when our(Liberian) leadership decided to clamp-down on U.S related investments as Liberia Tractor Co., (LIBTRACO), Liberia Trading Co.(LTC), United States Trading Co(USTC)… in Liberia. Those are some of the root causes of Liberia’s Economic Woes today. Let’s face it. If you put The U.S out of business. The U.S will surely react. FOR LIBERIA, THE CONSEQUENCES ARE DEVASTATING. Foreign Aides cost MONEY. The U.S must be allowed to earn MONEY.

  14. Mr. President, please in the name of God, if truly you love the Lord, Liberians and Liberia, Please! please! print 800000000000 LD (8B LD) not 3B LD. this will make each 4M Liberian get 1k USD or 200000LD each. and as UN ambassador and president, you can give yours to the unborn Liberians.

    Because Mr. President, what is the use of money or printing money;

    when you will not use it for the intended purpose;

    when my Liberian sister Talia Urey though we are not from the same mother but are all Liberians, was almost killed, got wounded, car destroy followers beaten, our father weah the president did not say sorry nor use some of the country money to give care to them;

    when the lady Justina was secretly beaten and almost killed, weah did not speak against it nor directly investigate and offer help financially;

    when many young girls are been rape each week or month and not money to fight their cases;

    when even the prisoners in jail dying from hunger;

    when the president can give $30,000 USD to a Liberian-American through the free port while many kids go will not be in school this month, and this guy walk away from Liberia to America with all this money that could be use to help the needed kids in school; in fact giving money to a Liberian in America is a sin against God and those in Liberia when that Liberian is to work and give to those at home;

    when the kids in the govt schools go to school and return hungry;

    when weah will use it to build mansion for money people to rent and pay him directly. something he could not do when he was W.E.A. best in football;

    when the people of west point and new kru town lives in slum and on the streets because of the flood, erosion, and natural crisis, will not be transfer to the president mansion for a short while until their lives can get better;

    when the president, all top govt official and legislature will have to get cut from each cent, and they will not get pay in LD but USD.

    when the govt will not use it to pay the govt workers but cut their salary;

    I said this 2005, 2011, 2014, and 2017, weah and I from the same home town in Liberia. but he should not have been made or elected as president but vice. He really don’t know what to do when he has power or money. He is getting confuse that printing money will better the country.

    if you ask him to pronounce or write the 3BLD down o paper, he cannot do;

    Liberians remember, what ever happens in the first 1-2 yrs of a govt is not the doing of that govt but the initial govt that was in power, this is universal. there is always some one to clean the road for other to start a walk on and as they go further they will have to make way for themselves. so is Govt.

    its time for weah to start his govt in the next few months, we need to pray hard and harder, if God don’t help us we are doom.

  15. My name is Perry Geevon Smith, I have a concern about Liberia printing such an amount, then what will happen to the incoming ECOWAS ( EUROS NOTES) coming for all West African States? Can Liberia wait for that as it is about to get into circulation January 2020? Am I making sense on this development?

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