The Minister of Commerce and Industry, Professor Wilson K. Tarpeh, urges petty traders in Liberia to realize that they have potentials to transform their own lives through constructive business activities.
However, he admonishes them not to engage in unlawful business practices that could undermine the government’s efforts to raise needed revenue to move the country ahead.
Professor Tarpeh spoke Wednesday, February 27, 2019 in a brief discussion with some Liberian petty traders.
The petty traders, predominately women, had gone to the Commerce Ministry to regularize their businesses after being closed down this week for not registering with government.
After acknowledging that they were in error for not registering their respective businesses, Professor Tarpeh, instructed the Inspectorate at the Commerce Ministry to waive fines the petty traders were to pay for their actions, but cautions them not to repeat same.
Businesses in such category are to register with $2,500 (two thousand five hundred Liberian Dollars), which is less than $20 United States Dollars based on the prevailing exchange rate in Liberia.
Professor Tarpeh further admonishes the petty traders to realize that the administration of President George Manneh Weah remains committed to making Liberians active participants in their own economy, rather than spectators.
He also calls on them to desist from practices that could undermine the CDC-led government’s determination to help Liberians, irrespective of status to take over the economy.
“The President wants all of you to succeed and this is why efforts are being made since the birth of his leadership to make you key actors in the Liberian economy,” the Commerce Minister assures petty traders.
Speaking further, he references the $3million United States Dollar loan program recently provided by government for small Liberian-owned business across the country.
The petty traders, including tailors were booked as a result of ongoing month-long nationwide inspection by the Inspectorate Division of the Ministry of Commerce and Industry.
The ongoing exercise is led by Inspector General Madam Josephine Davies. The inspection is focusing on business registration; Investment Act Enforcement, price- tagging of commodity and goods; foreign language and label, as well as standard related issues on several sectors. The sectors include rice, flour, starches, dairy products and frozen food.
The exercise is to provide protection for consumers and ensure continuous compliance with applicable laws, procedures and standards. Editing by Jonathan Browne