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New York- The United States Deputy Assistant Secretary , Bureau of African Affairs, Ambassador Bisa Williams, has said that the United States Government will remain fully engaged in partnership with Liberia and the rest of the West African States affected by the Ebola outbreak . She assured that her Government will work collaboratively with Liberia to build its capacity to prevent, detect and respond to future outbreaks before they become epidemics.
Amb. Williams Statement was contained in a paper she delivered over the weekend at the US- Liberia Trade and Investment Forum held in New York . She pointed out that Liberia being an unwavering partner of US, it will also remain committed to supporting Liberia’s development and Post -Ebola recovery plan.
” Our health partnership with Liberia is deep, but it is neither the beginning nor the end of the story. The United States is proud to be a partner to Liberia on a wide range of other, perhaps more uplifting matters as well”
She intimated that the United States Government through its Feed the Future initiative is investing in agricultural productivity and developing new value chains that hold the promise of generating higher incomes and providing more diverse diets to the Liberian people. Similarly, the US Government is enhancing market linkages to enable farmers to sell their crops and reinvest in their families and farms. Adding, that the US is closely working with the Government of Liberia to enable increased private sector investment in agriculture, because according to her, food is critical to life and more importantly food can be a big business – and as such, she sees no reason why Liberia shouldn’t benefit from that she noted.
In a bid to inspire investors confidence, the US Deputy Assistant Secretary told the audience that the US Government is strongly committed to working with the Government of Liberia to increase access to electricity for all Liberians especially the underserved and disadvantaged communities. She explained that Liberia is one of the six countries selected to benefit from President Obama’s “Power Africa” initiative which is implemented through the Liberia’s Ministry of Lands, Mines and Energy, Liberia’s Rural and Renewable Energy Agency and the World Bank. Adding; ” our goal is to increase households’ and businesses’ access to electricity, serving as many as 800,000 new users over the next five years.
Speaking further, Amb. Bisi told the business community in the United States that Liberia was investing in its future as evidenced by a number of concrete steps taken by the Government to improve the overall situations in the country.
“Today , we will hear how Liberia is investing in its future: strengthening administrative system, rooting out corruption, reinforcing democratic institutions, and setting the foundation for long-term progress and prosperity” She then lauded Liberia’s Agenda for Transformation which she lays out a path towards the country’s Vision 2030. Such a Vision, says Amb. Bisa, looks forward to a time when Liberia has become a middle-income county, with strong democratic institutions and stable and growing economy she averred.
The Forum attracted scores of entrepreneurs from across the United States as well as Diaspora and the Liberia-based business community .
Written by Abu Kamara
Minister Counselor for Press and Public Affairs
Permanent Mission of Liberia to the UN