The Liberian economy was in dire straits in the aftermath of the departure of the United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) principally because the foundation of the economy was building on strength of the international community’s presence. Consequently, the urgency to bring all hands on deck became imperative for President George Manneh Weah. Hence, convenience of an economic dialogue that brought together technocrats from the Government, development partners, civil society and the business community to carve out ways that the plummeting state state of the country’s economy would be revived as tensions were mounting.
A few years after the dialogue, the Government of Liberia, through the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning, Department of Economic Management along with Development partners on Thursday September 29, 2022 held a one-day post National Economic Dialogue review forum at the Ellen Johnson Sirleaf Ministerial Complex, the oldest Congo town to assess what has been achieved and steps to be taken to improve on areas that pose challenges.
It was held under the theme: ‘’ Reviewing the progress report on the National Economic Dialogue” and funded by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP).
Stakeholders at the dialogue, met its objectives, which included reviewing the progress made in the recovery of the economy from 2019, regardless of previous challenges encountered, and to ensure that people from diverse backgrounds were part of the process.
The gathering also provided the opportunity for participants to dialogue, exchange ideas and to offer concrete recommendations both short and long terms strategies towards restoring Liberia’s Socio-Economic recovery and stability.
Making remarks, the Deputy Minister for Economic Management, Hon. Augustus J. Flomo disclosed that the National Economic Dialogue was structured in four thematic areas including Financial Mobilization and Management, Private Sector Growth and investment, youth unemployment and skills development, peace building and reconciliation.
He noted that the report will look at the entire overview of the dialogue modalities; a synopsis of critical issues, challenges identified from presentations and working groups discussions.
“Today report will look at the entire overview of the dialogue modalities; a synopsis of critical issues, challenges identified from presentations and working groups discussions ‘’ Minister Flomo said.
According to him, the dialogue process started three years ago with help and support from the development partners in September 2019 to look at the progress of the Economy and point out the economic challenges across all sectors.
Deputy Minister Flomo said “looking at the different challenges from the planning stage, the team at the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning took a robust strategic approach to strengthen the reform process by allowing citizens benefit from all sectors.
We will also look at key Microeconomic issues, point out the challenges in the rule of law and the measure for timely intervention and solution”.
Minister Flomo recognized the National Economic Dialogue Secretariat for the level of commitment shown over the years and expressed gratitude to President of Liberia, Dr. George M. Weah for the opportunity, which comes with such important responsibility.
The long term goal of the dialogue is to strengthen transparency, participatory and accountable economic governance with the desired goal to motivate a broad-base national conversation on the state of the economy, and to collaboratively find ways that could stimulate Liberia on a path of rapid economic recovery.
For his part, the Head of Governance at the European Union (EU), Mr. Jyrki Torni who spoke on behalf of the Diplomatic Community, said they feel good as partners to be part of the dialogue in the recovery of the Liberian economy.
Mr. TORNI thanked the government of Liberia for the significant step and progress made, work completed so far and used the occasion to appeal for private sectors engagements, to get actively in the process of recovery.
The National Economic Dialogue (NED) is part of the ongoing efforts in support of the Pro-Poor Agenda for Prosperity and Development (PAPD) that is meant to address each of critical national issues in order to move Liberia forward and upward.
The event was attended by Development Partners, Civil Society Organization (CSO), Private Sectors, Government officials and Representatives from line Ministries and Agencies.