As Sierra Leone opens for business to potential and credible investors a nine man high powered delegation over the weekend arrived in the country from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to enhance the scale of foreign investment in crucial sectors of the economy.
The visit came as a follow-up of the progressive relations with the Government and People of Abu Dhabi, UAE based on mutual respect, goodwill and shared vision of progress that lead to the establishment of the Sierra Leone Trade Commission.
The delegation was received at Lunge International Airport by Siray Timbo Chairman of the Presidential Implementation Committee on Investment and Development in the GCC & Middle East, Minister of Works Alimamay Petito Koroma, Minister of Information Ibrahim Ben Kargbo, Deputy Minister of Economic Development Richard Konteh and Energy Minister Prof Ogulade amongst others.
The delegation was briefed at the airport by Government Ministers who and at the same time heartily welcomed the delegation to Sierra Leone and further expressed thanks and appreciation to the UAE for their efforts in maintaining the bilateral relations between the two countries and the follow up visit.
Responding the Leader of the delegation HE Ambassador Essa Abdulla Albasha Alnoaimi Director of African Affairs Department commended the Government and People of Sierra Leone for supporting UAE to emerge victorious to locate the headquarters of the International Renewable Energy Association (IRENA) and further promised to support and promote investment in Sierra Leone.
Upon arrival by helicopter at Aberdeen the delegation met the President at his Hill Station Lodge where they discussed bilateral relations and they were presented with a selected set of projects which they would provide financing to enable the commencement of technical discussions for implementation.
President Koroma expressed gratitude to the UAE for their timely intervention to Sierra Leone and encouraged the delegation to look at areas where they think is of interest to invest which will assist the Government’s Agenda for Change for sustainable development and rapid economic growth.
The delegation also met with cabinet Ministers yesterday at the Country Lodge chaired by Siray Timbo to discuss strong public, private partnership in the areas of energy, roads, water supply, housing and urban development, medical facilities, Tourism, Petroleum Exploration and Refinery Agriculture and Media development.
The delgation responded by assuring the Government of Sierra Leone that they are committed and determined to support and promote investments adding that a feasibility study will soon be carried out to highlight sectors that need urgent intervention in collaboration with the coordinating office in Sierra Leone.
Delivering the closing remarks the Director General of the Foreign Affairs Ministry Sullay Daramy underscored the long term relationship between the Government of Sierra Leone and UAE noting that an MOU will be signed by both countries on economic and technical cooperation within the next two weeks. The delgation departed yesterday for a visit to other African Countries. By Saidu Bah