NIC Chairman George Wisner
GoL, WAE sign US$1.3 bn Agreement
By Robert Dixon/LINA
MONROVIA, January 24 (LINA) - The Government of Liberia and the West Africa Exploration (WAE) based in Guinea have signed a US$1.3billion 25-year infrastructure development agreement for transshipment of minerals from Guinea through Liberia.
WAE will immediately begin operations with an initial investment of US$300 million in the first five years and US$1billion in the last 20 years of its stay in the country, according to the terms of the agreement which was signed at the National Investment Commission (NIC) in Monrovia Friday.
The Chairman of NIC, Ministry of Lands, Mines and Energy, Ministry of Finance and Development Planning, Transport Ministry and the Ministry of Justice signed for the Liberian Government, while the President and Chief Executive Officer of WAE, Aboubacar Sampil and legal counsel Robert Tubman signed for the company, according to the Liberia News Agency.
Speaking at the ceremony, NIC Chairman George Wisner said the agreement stands to bring social and economic benefits in Liberia and Guinea – two countries that were seriously hit by the Ebola virus.
According to him, the document will bring into fulfillment regional cooperation protocols like the Manor River Union (MRU) Accord and the ECOWAS Conventions aimed at expanding economic development through enhanced regional cooperation and cross-border trade.
He noted that the agreement will require approval by the National Legislature.
Wisner said upon ratification and publication of the agreement into handbill, the company will pay US$250,000 as signature fees.
Meanwhile, the President and Chief Executive officer of the WAE, Sampil has expressed gratitude to the government and people of Liberia, and promised that his company will uphold the terms of the contract.
In remarks, Madam Aminata Sylla, Advisor on private sector, commerce and industry to the Guinean leader Alpha Conde, as well as Guinean Ambassador to Liberia Abdulla Dore noted that signing of the agreement will provide more job opportunities for citizens of the two countries.