CBL Seeks New Partnership

On the sidelines of the 52nd Annual Meeting of the African Development Bank (AfDB), the Governor of the Central Bank of Liberia (CBL), Mr. Milton A. Weeks has held meetings with officials of Citi Bank, aimed at exploring areas of cooperation between the two institutions, particularly the establishment of corresponding relationships for the CBL and commercial banks in Liberia.

The Governor informed Citi Bank representatives that CBL needed the corresponding relationship to handle its transactions and manage its reserves. Citi’s representatives welcomed the meeting and informed the Executive Governor that such collaboration is worth pursuing.

The Citi Bank officials offered to provide guidance that would help to attract corresponding relationship from international banks. They said Citi Bank technicians would be willing to work along with their Liberian counterparts to explore other possible areas of collaboration. Governor Weeks also held discussions with the senior management of the African Export – Import Bank (Afrexim). The discussions focused mainly on access to finance, especially creating line of credit to guarantee trade finance activities emanating from Liberia. Officials of the Bank have agreed to visit Liberia to follow-up on discussions between the two institutions.

The CBL Governor has also held discussions with Executives of the West Africa Monetary Institute (WAMI) on arrangements as Liberia prepares to host the upcoming meeting of Ministers and Governors of the West Africa Monetary Zone (WAMZ). Governor Weeks has also held meetings with the Director General for West Africa of the AfDB Group, Janvier K. Litse; and the new Governor of the Central Bank of the Gambia, BakaryJammeh, accompanied by his deputy. The meetings focused on possible areas of collaboration between the Central Bank of Liberia and the respective institutions.

The CBL Governor is among several Governors of African Central Banks, Finance Ministers and other representatives of other leading financial institutions attending the 52nd Annual Meeting of the Board of Governors of the African Development Bank (AfDB) and the 43rd Meetings of the Board of Governors of the African Development Fund (ADF).

Liberia’s Finance and Development Planning Minister, BoimaKamara, is heading the Liberian delegation to the Meetings in his capacity as Governor of the AfDB for Liberia. Minister Kamara has also held various bilateral meetings on the sidelines of the Annual Meetings which opened in Ahmedabad, India, on Tuesday, May 23, 2017, with calls for greater cooperation between the Bank and India to help drive Africa’s transformation.

Opening the Meetings at the Mahatma Mandir Conference and Exhibition Center, Indian Prime Minister NarendraModi, reiterated India’s strong ties with Africa and promised that Africa would continue to be a top priority for India’s foreign economic policy. Being held under the theme, “Transforming Agriculture for Wealth Creation in Africa,” Prime Modi said his country and the bank can fruitfully join hands for greater partnership. “I have launched an initiative to double farmer’s incomes by 2022,” Prime Minister Modi disclosed, “It will require concerted steps, ranging from improved seeds and optimum inputs, to reduce crop losses and better marketing infrastructure.” India, he said, is keen to learn from Africa’s experience as the bank and his country proceed on the initiative. Africa, Mr. Modi said can also benefit from the Indian experience in the development of the agriculture sector.

For his part, AfDB President AkinwumiAdesina spoke of the Bank’s new transformation agenda which he said is encapsulated in the High 5s and underscored the need to support the Bank with the resources required to enable it accomplish its ambition programs for the good of the African continent. He praised the partnership between the AfDB and India over the years and expressed hope that the bank would benefit greatly from India’s success in agriculture. “From being dependent on imports for food security, India has achieved self-sufficiency in the last three years” said AfDB Mr. Adesina. “When we follow India’s model of agriculture, Agriculture can help eradicate poverty in a big way,” he added. According to reports, Africa produces only 10% of the global food output despite having 60% of the arable land in the world. On the contrary, India has to support its population (17% of the world population) with 2% of world land mass.
Tuesday’s opening ceremony was attended by the presidents of Benin and Senegal, the Vice President of Cote D’Ivoire and other partner countries including Japan and China.

Governor Weeks is accompanied to the Meetings by Mr. Michael B. Ogun, Senior Advisor on Multilateral Relations; Mr. FonsiaDonzo, Deputy Director, Regulation & Supervision Department; Mr. Jackson Wolobah, Deputy Director, Research Policy & Planning Department, Ms. Lilian Best, Corporate Policy Coordinator and Mr. Cyrus W. Badio, Head of Communications.

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