Liberia seeks Indian investment in mining, farm sectors

New Delhi, Sep 11 (IANS) Promising reforms and business-friendly environment, Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf Wednesday urged Indian entrepreneurs to invest in her country, especially in mining, energy and agriculture sectors.

Addressing a meeting organised by the leading industry chambers here, Sirleaf described Liberia as an attractive investment destination and said Indian investors were most welcome to participate in the development process of the country.

"Liberia is rich in natural resources -- our forests are virgin; our mountains are filled with iron ore, gold and diamonds; our land is fertile, with plentiful rain; and our share of the Atlantic Ocean has fish potential and for hydrocarbon," she said.

"Agriculture remains our key area of strength, with rubber being our traditional export. We also are a major oil palm producer, with recent investments from two Asian countries, Malaysia and Indonesia. Traditionally, coffee and cocoa also are part of our endowment," Sirleaf said.

Sirleaf, who is on an official visit to India, was addressing an interactive business meeting jointly organised by the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI), the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry (Assocham).

Sirleaf said Liberian government was committed to "create an open and transparent environment which guarantees investors a fair return on their investment, while respecting the rights and dignities of our citizens."

Addressing the event, Manish Kharbanda, executive director, Jindal Steel and Power said Indian entrepreneurs were impressed by the business opportunities in Liberai.

"We attach great importance to our relationship with Liberia and visits like such as these add a lot of confidence to the industry to further deepen our engagement," said Kharbanda, who is also a member of FICCI.

"In April this year, a delegation of Indian industry members had visited Liberia and they had met the Liberian President and the other leading stakeholders in the government and industry. The delegation was impressed with the new economic architecture of the country," he said.

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