Liberia: CBL Board Of Governors Holds Its Annual Retreat

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MONROVIA – The Board of Governors of the Central Bank of Liberia, (CBL) has re-affirmed its commitment to rebranding the Bank in keeping with its three-year strategic plan (2021-2023) and effectively delivering on its mandate as expected by the people of Liberia.

The Board re-affirmed its commitment at the end of its annual retreat on September 24, 2022, at a local Hotel in Monrovia, Liberia.

Speaking during the retreat, the CBL Executive Governor, J. Aloysius Tarlue, Jr. thanked the Board and Management team for their continuous support to the rebranding of the CBL over the years. He noted that without their support and hard work, the Bank would not have made the progress and achievements it has recorded. Governor Tarlue further acknowledged the efforts of the Board and Management for ensuring that the Bank carries out its core mandate and responsibility in keeping with the Amended and Restated CBL Act of 2020.

Governor Tarlue noted that the retreat was convening at a challenging time when the Bank is implementing a very important national responsibility – the currency reform exercise. The process, the Governor said, has gone well thus far, stressing the important role played by the Board of Governors, but noted that there is a need to be more vigilant to mitigate all potential risks that could undermine it.

The Executive Governor also highlighted a positive outlook for the ongoing currency reform program of the Bank, underscoring that the taskis not only important for its contribution to promoting macroeconomic and financial stability of the country, but it is also important for restoring public confidence and trust in the financial system. Hence the need for all stakeholders to work together to ensure the integrity and credibility of the process.

The Governor further noted that the Country’s economy was on a positive trajectory, largely attributed to sound monetary policy and prudent fiscal measures, which were confirmed by the 4th Review of the Extended Credit Facility (ECF) program completed in March this year.

“We have done quite well in keeping inflation under control owing to our contractionary monetary policy stance. Our economy is on a stable path through our prudent supervision of the financial sector and sound monetary policy decisions,” the Governor pointed out, noting that Liberia is currently one of the countries in the West African sub-region with one of the lowest level of inflation, despite increasing international prices of fuel and food due to the impact of COVID-19 pandemic and Russia-Ukraine geopolitical war which have affected the global economy and financial markets. Governor Tarlue cautioned that the Russia-Ukraine crisis poses significant downside risk to the inflation outlook of the country, adding that, “we need to closely monitor the situation and act, if necessary, to keep our economy on a stable path.”

The CBL Executive Governor observed that there are still critical challenges facing the Bank despite the many achievements. Key among the challenges, he pointed out, is the perennial problem of high non-performing loans (NPLs) which pose systemic risk to the stability of the country’s financial system. He expressed the hope that the Board is working tirelessly to address this problem and promote the stability of the financial system to contribute to macroeconomic stability.

During Saturday’s session, Members of the Board of Governors made presentations on key topics: Governor James B. Dennis made presentation on Corporate Governance highlighting the principles of effective corporate governance in central banking. Governor D. Sheba Brown presented on the principles and practices of effective banking operations and threshold, while Governor Timothy Thomas shed light on public procurement with emphasis on accountability, transparency, and value-for-money. For his part, the Executive Governor, J. Aloysius Tarlue, Jr. presented on the key provisions of the Amended and Restated Act of the CBL.

Other speakers at the retreat were Deputy Governor for Operations, Nyemadi Pearson who shed light on CBL’s operations and Deputy Governor for Economic Policy, Dr. Musa Dukuly presented on the Liberian economy and financial stability concerns.

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