By: Eldred Thomas/GNN Senior Reporter
The Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC), a United States Government’s development finance institution recently signed a letter of commitment for a $20 million direct loan to the International Bank Liberia Limited (IBLL) to support lending sectors in the country.
The sectors include construction, services, manufacturing, agribusiness, hospitality, and transportation.
According to a US Embassy dispatch, the project seeks to foster jobs and opportunities by supporting investments in key economic areas and increasing long term lending to the Liberian private sector.
OPIC President and Chief Executive Officer Elizabeth L. Littlefield signed the commitment letter alongside IBLL Chief Executive Officer Henry Saamoi and Pan African Capital Group, LLC Chief Executive Officer Stephen D. Cashin.
While visiting Monrovia a group of American and international executives for a business development and investment mission exploring aimed at to assist in increasing opportunity on the continent. The Liberian banking sector is faced with a number of critical challenges, the dispatch observed.
This loan facility will allow Liberia’s economy to expand organically and the financial service industry to expand banking services, extend long credit facilities, support macroeconomic growth and poverty reduction, and connect Liberia with the global financial system.
The dispatch quotes OPIC President and Chief Executive Officer Elizabeth L. Littlefield as saying it was pleased to be working with IBLL on its facility.
“The OPIC facility, the dispatch noted will allow IBLL to address a gap in the marketplace by providing clients in the 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.”
For his part, the Pan African Capital Group Founder and Chief Executive Officer Stephen D. Cashin expressed excitement, stressing that he is proud to be working with OPIC on its loan facility, and expressed confidence in OPIC has likewise in IBLL; one of the strongest and most profitable commercial banks in Liberia.
Mr. Cashin added optimism that with its young, energetic, and committed Liberian management team, IBLL will continue to grow as one of the leading financial institutions in the country.
The Pan African Capital Group Founder and Chief Executive Officer said it was proud of where it has come from as a bank, surviving the trials and tribulations brought upon the country as a result of the civil crisis and followed by the scourge of the Ebola Virus Disease, noting with conviction the young and energetic management team has shown real commitment to success.
Also speaking at the signing ceremony was IBLL Chief Executive Officer Henry F. Saamoi who expressed appreciation for the start of such a journey and partnership.
OPIC President and Chief Executive Officer Elizabeth L. Littlefield is traveling throughout Liberia and Sierra Leone this week with a delegation of American executives to meet with government officials and business leaders and identify investment opportunities in the region as it continues to rebound from the Ebola crisis.