MONROVIA – Investment opportunities in Liberia are enormous. It ranges from the hospitality industry, tourism, transportation, construction, you name it; 171 years of independence, but the country still presents untapped opportunities.
Not only is the country still virgin for investment, it has over the years since the end of the civil war, been relatively peaceful with an affordable labor market.
Liberia’s President, George Manneh Weah, has repeatedly expressed that the country, under his regime, is ready for business and open for investment. He has continued to encourage investors to take advantage of the many investment opportunities in the country – promising to continue to work to make the investment climate more investor-friendly.
The tourism and hospitality industry remain largely untapped. This industry is still virgin in Liberia.
Primary sector to investment in tourism include eco-tourism lodging in the forest, rainforest and explorer safari’s on horseback or SUVs, cultural village tours, beach club development, hotels and lodging, marina harbor development, sea excursion, etc.
In recent time, the Liberian government through the National Investment Commission (NIC) put out a bid for the infrastructure development that could boost tourism in the country. The government looks forward to rehabilitation of the Hotel Africa, a formerly outstanding five-star hotel built in 1979 to host the Organization of African Unity (OAU) Summit in Monrovia. This structure is situated on a 159 acre of land with a long stretch of beach view, villas, a large conference facility, a golf course, etc.
The rehabilitation of Ducor Hotel presents another golden opportunity for investment. The once five-star hotel sits on the cliff overlooking the entire Monrovia and the Atlantic Ocean. The Liberian Government has expressed open a bid for public private partnership for the rehabilitation of his hotel which sits on a 10-acre land in the heart of Monrovia. The estimated cost of this project is US$42 million, according t the National Investment Commission (NIC).
A historic multipurpose building with a theatre – E. J. Roye Building – can serve up to 2,0000 guests if renovated. Feasibility study puts the cost of renovation at US$18 million.
The Liberian Government has also been encouraging investors to venture real estate development in the country, especially for low and middle income earners. Liberia has a large diaspora population and an emerging middle class within the country which is thereby increasing the demand for these housing units and apartment complexes.
The foremost priority of the Weah-led administration is road connectivity. This is one sector where the government has keen interest and would embrace any well-meaning investor.
Outstanding road projects include:
- 15km bridge linking Gardnerville to Sinkor (possible toll road project with the projection of high traffic). The cost of construction stands at US$80 million.
- Coastal highway covering the long coastal line of Liberia
- Construction and management of road links (toll road system) as reform progresses for fair payment for road users
- Long term road maintenance initiatives
- ELWA (Monrovia) to Robertsfield International Airport road and lighting system.
The James Spriggs Airfield located in Central Monrovia is also out for PPP. Potential for domestic and regional flights. The objective of rehabilitating this airport is to improve functionality and safety; provide standardized equipment that will meet the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) Standard and Recommended Practices (SARPs) and thereby guarantee the efficient delivery of quality service to users.
You’ll be starting a very enterprising business if you venture PPP in the provision of mass transport services, public parking facilities or construction of bus stations and bus services.
Commercial trucking transportation service is a viable business in Liberia because it is readily in demand, which means the benefits from its operations surpass its cost. The number of ships docking and disembarking from the Freeport of Monrovia is growing. According to official statistics, more than 6,500 containers were delivered a the port in January 2015. With few trucking companies in Liberia, this is a very huge market that must be taken advantage of. About a year ago, vessels were unloading between 4,500 to 5,000 containers monthly.