Liberia: President Weah Pledges Political Will to Recommendations From National Economic Dialogue

Monrovia, Liberia - The President of the Republic, His Excellency Dr. George Manneh Weah, has promised his Administration's political will to the recommendations from the ongoing National Economic Dialogue taking place in Monrovia.

He said recommendations from the Dialogue would be taken under serious advisement, and, where and when necessary, would be backed with the political will required for successful implementation.

In his keynote statement delivered Wednesday, September 4, 2019, at the opening of the 3-day forum being attended by national and international stakeholders, President Weah said his Administration decided holding the National Economic Dialogue (NED) as an "important initiative aimed at stimulating a broad-based conversation among stakeholders within the Liberian economy, concerning the best and most feasible way forward to sustainable growth and development."

"You may recall that, in my first Annual Message which was given one week after I assumed the Presidency in January last year, I informed the Nation that the state of the economy that my administration had inherited left a lot to be desired," the President said, indicating that there were structural challenges which would require major adjustments if they were not to continue to have a negative impact on macro-economic stability.

"There were also issues of liquidity, and a persistent decline in the value of our currency, compounded by reducing inflows of foreign exchange and investments, all of which placed upward pressure on inflation."

The Liberian leader said in the eighteen months since his incumbency, "we have exercised our best efforts as a Government to address these issues. Yet, many of them persist, and continue to present challenges."

He said the NED therefore grew out of his government's determination to address the serious downward trend of the economy, with the hope to find the best possible solutions that ameliorate the problems.

The NED is being held under the theme: "National Economic Revival and Growth: Critical Issues, Challenges, And A Way Forward."

The President said further: "Given our deep concern for the current state of the Liberian economy, and our appreciation of the urgent need to take corrective action in the short, medium and long terms, we established an Independent National Dialogue Secretariat. We gave them the mandate to create this consultative forum, where the best and the brightest minds, both Liberian and International, can be made to focus on analysis and diagnosis of our economic problems, and development prescriptions, policies, programs that should take our economy forward and upward to growth and prosperity for all."

He said while he is not an economist, and will never pretend to be one, he has the mantle of leadership that has been placed upon him, giving him direct responsibility to find solutions to repair the broken Liberian economy, and make life better for the people.

The President further said he has been urging all Liberians to work with his Administration to devise and support new measures which could successfully address the structural defects and imbalances in our economy.

He said: "And I then called for discussions and dialogue on the way forward for economic revival in Liberia. This is the genesis of this National Economic Dialogue Conference."

The President said he was impressed by the caliber of Liberian and foreign panelists, and the depth and range of their experience and knowledge they will bring to bear in searching for lasting solutions to our economic problems.

"I am convinced that your findings and recommendations will support and enhance the attainment of the goals and objectives of our national development plan, the Pro-Poor Agenda for Prosperity and Development."

President Weah assured the nation that his administration would take the NED's recommendations and back them with the political will required for successful implementation.

He thanked international and development partners for the support and assistance of our in making the NED a reality.

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