Liberia Rubber Planters Laud Gov’t for US$1.7m Loan to Local Farmers
Monrovia – The Rubber Planters Association of Liberia (RPAL) has praised efforts by the government appropriation US$1.725 million loan to local farmers.
Report by Augustine T. Tweh, [email protected]
The loan is in fulfillment of George Weah’s plan to revamp the agriculture sector, especially the rubber industry and curtail the enormous challenges faced by local farmers.
Speaking at a press conference in Monrovia, the President of RPAL, Wilhemina G. Mulbah-Siaway said the government’s support is consistent with its policy in developing the agriculture sector, noting that the sector is a “major engine for the growth and development of the country’s economy”.
She lauded the government for its continuous support to the sector by creating enabling policy plan and the stimulus funding to revamp the sector.
“The Rubber Planters Association of Liberia which is the umbrella organization of all rubber farmers and plantations owners in Liberia wishes to recognize and appreciate the Government of Liberia for its continuous support to the rubber sector through stimulus funding during this period of sustained decline of rubber price on the global market with double negative impacts on local market in Liberia,” President Mulbah-Siaway said.
Madam Mulbah-Siaway added that the rubber sector is the “pre-eminent provider of revenues, exports earnings and jobs creation in the rural economy of the country”.
She said the appropriation of the loan to the sector has also reaffirmed government commitment to transitioning the sector products from sales of raw materials to value addition.
She added that the loan will cover operational deficits owing to the continual low price of rubber, funding for newly matured rubber trees and value addition, which are necessary to transition the rubber industry from farmgate pricing to world market pricing.
RPAL President also stated that local rubber farmers taking the loan will pay back the money in four years period with 8% interest rate.
“As the President has mentioned the importance of the rubber sector to the national economy, it is hoped and anticipated that the government will continue to work with the RPAL and all stakeholders in moving the rubber sector to an economically sustainable level,” she said.