The Government of Liberia, with support from international partners is planning a three-day National Economic Dialogue on the current state of the economy.
Former Foreign Minister Dr. Toga Gayewea McIntosh, who chairs the upcoming forum observes that current debates in the country begin with and end with talks about structural macroeconomic challenges facing Liberia, which he says have not only dampened the Liberian economy, but have also posed considerable risks to the very survival of the people and the State.
Specifically, the Dialogue is being organized with support from the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). The economy under the Weah administration has performed dismally characterized by hyperinflation, high exchange rate and sky-rocketing prices, leading to a downward trend.
While we applaud the government and its partners for being farsighted in arranging a discussion on the economy that is expected to bring together about 250 discussants from diverse professional backgrounds, we hope all sides would act in sincerity, particularly the Weah administration for the common good of Liberia.
It is no time for politicking; we need all hands on deck in finding prescriptions to fix the economy and reverse the downward path we are heading.
Dr. McIntosh names public finance mobilization and management, investment promotion and private sector growth, youth unemployment and skills development, and national reconciliation for sustained economic growth.
The Liberian economist and development planner says impact of these challenges has led to slow growth of the economy; rising prices for basic commodities; a steady rise in the volume of Liberia’s balance of payments deficits; an unending depreciation of the Liberian currency; and mounting pressures on closing the gap between revenue and expenditure in the national budget.
Surely we can’t be discussing the economy and at the same time beating war drum or speaking language of violence. No, the two are mutually exclusive.
And the onus is on all Liberians, mainly those in the ruling establishment to lead the road to peace, reconciliation and unity. The governing Coalition for Democratic Change ought to realize that it has everything to loss, if the current peace is disrupted.
No government can govern effectively in the midst of anarchy. The ruling CDC should know this and sincerely endeavor to leading all Liberians to a vibrant destiny, irrespective of politics, religion or social status.