Welcoming the delegation, President Koroma said that the delegation was coming in at a time when the country is winning the fight against the waning Ebola virus. He said the country was doing the right things prior to the Ebola outbreak as it was considered one of the fastest growing economies in the world and classified by the World Bank as one of the ten countries for doing business as well as one of the top reformers in the world in governance. As a result of this, the President said, the country was already attracting foreign direct investment in agriculture, mining and tourism. He added that government will be launching the National Ebola recovery programme next week that is going to span a six to nine months recovery to get the country back on its feet and re-engage in development activities.
The President stated that Sierra Leone is an open economy with great potentials in terms of natural resources and investment opportunities. He pointed out that the country has the institutions that can partner with VP Holding International so that investment possibilities are packaged referencing SLIEPA and the PPP Unit. He expressed delight about the investors’ financial and technical expertise and the experience to participate in the transformation of the country.
He said the country has over five million hectares of land that are not being utilized, fisheries potentials and a variety of mineral resources. President Koroma emphasized the importance of developing the internal capacities that can harness young people’s capacity to be part and parcel of this transformation. He encouraged them to engage with the private sector and government and come up with proposals.
On behalf of VP Holding International, Virgil Profeanu said he was thrilled by government’s development agenda and expressed enthusiasm to be part of President Koroma’s team in achieving the development vision of the country. He said they have a company that is specialized in engineering and project management and have developed in the last five years a very strong capacity in partnership with international companies with a total annual turnover of more than two hundred billion United States Dollars. He expressed the willingness to invest in the country in mining, agriculture, infrastructure, energy, among others.
Profeanu added that they can also be part of transforming President Koroma’s vision into a real objective with the required expertise and structures put in place as part of the transformation. He expressed strong belief that the development agenda particularly Vision 2035 can be achieved in the next ten years and hoped that the President will accept their services and partnership. He noted that the country has all the ingredients that will transform all the ideas that are encapsulated in the Agenda for Prosperity into real investment through private money that will be set up for the country.