President and Chief Executive Officer of the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC), Elizabeth Littlefield, says that its investment portfolio in the Sub-Saharan Africa region needs to develop further as it is still too small to meet the region’s needs.
Littlefield noted that despite a total investment of $6 billion to date, they are working towards generating further investment, the Liberian Daily Observer reported.
“Although our portfolio has increased over the years, we believe this is too small and we aim to change that,” adding that, “we are here to listen and learn.”
OPIC to drive larger investment
Littlefield made this statement recently at a signing ceremony for a $20 million loan, between OPIC and the International Bank Liberia Limited (IBLL), the Liberian Daily Observer reported.
“The OPIC loan agreement will allow IBLL to address a gap in the marketplace by providing clients in road infrastructure construction sector, manufacturing sector, agribusiness sector, and other industries with long term credit facilities, which will enable those clients to significantly contribute to Liberia’s economic recovery,” Littlefield said.
“We are here to offer Liberian companies face-to-face access to investors and to provide information about the resources that OPIC and interested investors may be able to share,” Littlefield added.
IBLL Chief Executive Officer Henry F. Saamoi said Littlefield has proven herself as a real partner in Liberia’s development agenda: “As a majority US owned institution, I want to say what we are about to witness is a further testament of the commitment of the American people to the Liberian people; and as an indigenous Liberian, I am very proud to be part of this process.”
Saamoi added: “We focus principally on development initiates, but also realize that the economy is a trading thus compelling us to work with both the large trading community as well as meeting the needs of the small Liberian businessperson.”