During the opening of the meeting, GiEPA’ s Chief Executive Officer Ousainou Senghore said the steering committee was set up to review the work that had been done by the project supported by AfDB. He added that on Tuesday, they had a regional steering committee meeting among Gambia, Liberia and Sierra Leone, along with AfDB in which they reviewed the work of the project.
He expatiated: “The project has three components and one is to provide GiEPA capacity in terms of investment, promotion and facilitation. They have offered training to our staff in terms of customer services and aftercare services. The other component involves the provision of a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) and it enabled GiEPA to capture data from investors regarding investment potential or enquiries.”
He stated further that the CRM is also used in terms of monitoring existing investors on the progresses they made in terms of the business plan they submitted to them on what they had delivered, how much they invested, the number of jobs they are providing and all after-care services. Senghore said the CRM will transform and improve its efficiency as an agency with respect to delivery.
One of the most important things in investment that the country faces hinges on three solutions, which are investment, export and entrepreneurship, the GiEPA CEO says: “When we look at the investment environment in the country, it has improved because a lot has been done in terms of promoting and outlining GiEPA’s mandate and educating sister institutions. We want both domestic and international investors to come to GiEPA to facilitate their mission and ensure that they meet with private sector players.”
Hamey B. Jawara, senior manager of investment promotion and facilitation at GiEPA, also emphasised that a study was done by the AfDB after the change of government in 2016 to support GiEPA and other institutions in Sierra Leone and Liberia to promote investment.
Mr Jawara, who is also the project coordinator, said the project was launched on 21 January 2021 and should be implemented for a period of three years. He also said they are looking at how they could attract investors from different parts of the world, adding that the project would help them to come up with a valid proposition.
“Those are the sectors we need to promote the development agenda of the government. The sectors are identified and it includes agri-business, tourism, manufacturing and transportation,” he divulged, saying: “We have realised that there is a lot of potential in river transportation because we have the river that can be used to transport people and cargo.”