Liberia News: AML SET TO STRENGTHEN HISTORIC INVESTMENT JOURNEY IN LIBERIA

Monrovia-April-8-TNR:ArcelorMittal Global Executive Chairman, Lakshmi Mittal, is set to arrive in Liberia on Monday, April 8, 2024, for a high-level meeting with His Excellency President Joseph Boakai in Monrovia.

The discussion will revolve around ArcelorMittal’slong-term partnership and investment in Liberia, including its third amended Mineral Development Agreement and its Phase II Expansion Project.

Signing of the 3rd amended MDA in September 2021 paved  the way for the resumption of the second largest mining project in West Africa.

The expansion project, encompassing processing – the construction of a world-class concentrator, and upgrades to rail, and port facilities, represents a substantial investment of approximately 1.4 billion, making it one of the largest mining projects in West Africa.

Construction and operations of the concentrator will revolutionize Liberia’s iron ore mining from  DirectShipment Ore (DSO) to increased production of premium concentrate iron ore, triple it’s current five million tonnes per annum.

In its construction phase, the project has already generated over 2000 new jobs and wider economic benefits for Liberia.

As the ArcelorMittal Liberia Phase II Expansion Project progresses, the company’s third amended MDA is still pending ratification.

The deal faced hurdles in Liberia’s legislative process, as it was not passed by the 54th House of Representatives.

Nevertheless, since the Boakai administration took office, ArcelorMittal has been working behind the scenes to reintroduce the concession agreement.

The new agreement, once passed, will not only increase ArcelorMittal’s annual contribution to the government of Liberia but also boost the county development fund.

As part of its commitment to Liberia’s development, ArcelorMittal operates a Vocational Training Centre and provides advanced training programs for high-potential Liberian employees, focusing on various aspects of mining production and operations optimization.

This investment in skills training aims to provide employment opportunities and professional development to Liberians while also fostering the growth of small and medium-sized businesses in the country.

During the upcoming meeting, sources suggest that Mr. Mittal and President Boakai will discuss the details of the third Mineral Development Agreement (MDA), laying the groundwork for further collaboration and economic growth in Liberia.

The meeting between these key stakeholders underscores the importance of partnership and cooperation in realizing Liberia’s economic potential and fostering sustainable development for its people.

AML has said the project will also provide more than 5000 indirect jobs, a milestone that follows the already impressive generation of 3000 direct jobs.

One of the pivotal outcomes of the Phase Two Expansion is the anticipated surge in government revenue.

Projections suggest a substantial increase from the current $35 million to an impressive USD 75 million, an infusion of funds that can fuel various public initiatives, contributing to Liberia’s overall growth.

History of ArcelorMittal Operations in Liberia:

Arcelor Mittal’s entry into Liberia’s iron ore sector amidst the aftermath of the civil war marked a pivotal moment in the nation’s journey toward economic revitalization.

At a time when Liberia languished in the shadow of conflict and instability, the prospect of significant foreign investment seemed bleak.

However, Mr. Mittal’s decision to brave the storm and commit substantial resources to Liberia’s development sent a resounding message of confidence in the country’s potential for recovery and growth. This bold move not only catalyzedArcelorMittal’s transformative investment in Liberia but also served as a beacon of hope, restoring faith in the nation’s economic prospects.

The decision by ArcelorMittal to invest in Liberia during such a fragile period had far-reaching implications beyond the iron ore industry as it catalyzed renewed investment confidence in Liberiand inspired a wave of interest from other global companies eager to participate in the country’s post-war reconstruction efforts.

The tenure of President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf saw a surge in foreign investment, buoyed by the precedent set by Arcelor Mittal’s bold venture where Liberia, once marred by conflict and instability, emerged as an attractive destination for international investors seeking opportunities in a nascent yet promising market.

ArcelorMittal’s commitment to Liberia not only helped revitalize the iron ore sector but also contributed to broader socio-economic development initiatives, which many believe laid the groundwork for sustainable growth and prosperity.

The company’s investment in infrastructure rehabilitation, community development projects, and job creation initiatives highlight its dedication to fostering inclusive and sustainable development in Liberia and set a precedent for responsible corporate citizenship that has played a pivotal role in shaping Liberia’s post-war trajectory.

ArcelorMittal Liberia’s project in Liberia stands as a testament to the transformative power of strategic investment and corporate stewardship in post-conflict settings.

The decision to invest in Liberia during its darkest hour not only revitalized the nation’s iron ore industry but also catalyzed a broader resurgence in investment confidence, laying the foundation for sustainable economic growth and development.

As Liberia continues its journey toward prosperity, the legacy of ArcelorMittal’s bold investment serves as a reminder of the resilience and potential inherent in nations recovering from conflict.

 

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