LIBERIA: Senator Prince Johnson Hails ArcelorMittal’s Social Development Contribution
Nimba County Senator Prince Johnson has praised ArcelorMittal’s exceptional private sector leadership role over the last fifteen years in Liberia.
Senator Johnson speaking a session of citizens recently acknowledged that since ArcelorMittal entered Liberia in 2005 the company has lived up to its part of the Mineral Development Agreement signed with the government.
He told the citizens that Mittal has regularly paid agreed county social development funds for the host communities and has as well lived up to its commitment on taxes and royalties to government.
While acknowledging AML as a champion of Liberia post conflict development through private sector leadership, dedication, and responsible business activities, the Nimba Senator however stressed it important for the government to ensure timely disbursement of AML social funding for host communities to benefit.
Said Senator Johnson: “the only company that came to this country right after our war is Mittal steel. Mittal Steel gives to the government her own royalty tax”.
“Mittal Steel give to Nimba 1.5 million and give Bong County 5,000 thousand for passing though, one million to Grand Bassa for the use of the port”.
He added “as I speak to you, the government of Liberia is owning us more than 7.5 million dollars. Mittal Steel pay but we can’t have access”.
Senator Johnson emphasized that the host communities in Nimba, Bassa and Bong counties have been complaining over the lack of political will in the CDC government to disburse money paid by ArcelorMittal to the affected counties.
ArcelorMittal Liberia has paid more than US $ 40 million in social development funding and regularly goes further to solve health, education, and infrastructural challenges in mainly the affected communities and elsewhere.
This is in addition to its 20% project initiative where residents in the directly affected communities benefit from the construction of school, handpumps, toilets, hospitals etc.
In 2022, the company launched two key initiatives: a grassroots community development scholarship for high school students as well as the ArcelorMittal Young Professionals program.
Scores of Liberians from the host communities in Bassa, Nimba, and Bong and other counties have benefited international scholarships in the areas of business, logistics, mining, and engineering.
Mid last year, AML launched its massive Phase 2 expansion project for additional investment in rail, processing, and logistics with a target of reaching 30 metric tons per annual.
This project will witness new investment to build the capacity of Liberian infrastructures like rail and port development in Buchanan.
With the construction of a new iron ore processing plant in Nimba and huge logistics deployment, the phase 2 expansion is creating about 3000 jobs in the construction phase alone.