United States Ambassador Michael McCarthy is pushing for visa flexibility here to enable the country to attract much needed foreign investments.
Amb. McCarthy told journalists during his visit at the Jeety Rubber Factory in Cinta, Weala, Margibi County on Wednesday, June 7, that if the Liberian Government can introduce a visa upon arrival at the airport or reduce the price of obtaining a Liberian visa it could help bring in more investors.
According to him, the cumbersome process potential investors go through to obtain a Liberian visa, sometimes three times the price is undermining Liberia’s investment climate,
“There are several things that can be done to bring in more investment if Americans and Western investors don’t have to buy visas and can get visas at the airport or reduce the price, more investors will come,” Amb. McCarthy said.
“The more barrels are removed from foreign investments, the more possibilities there are for Liberia,” Amb. McCarthy added.
Amb. McCarthy made the comments after showering praises on Indian businessman Upjit Sengh Sahadeva, commonly known as Mr. Jeety for his ambitious investment following his tour of the factory.
“This is the kind of investment that multiplies. This Factory is helping the local community and jobs are already being created in this neighborhood outside of Monrovia,” the US diplomat continued.
The tough-talking US diplomat noted that in a situation where investors can purchase land without controversies and like in the case of Mr. Jeety, it creates confidence for investors.
He described the Jeety Rubber Factory investment as an ambitious project, saying when Mr. Jeety first told him about the investment, he told him it was ambitious but seeing the factory becoming a reality just shows what can be done when Government creates an enabling environment for investment.
For his part, Mr. Jeety thank Ambassador McCarthy for his visit, saying the project could not have been successful without the support of the citizens and local authorities in the area.
Mr. Jeety also informed the US Ambassador that he enjoys the full support of the government for his investment and has projected 2026 as the year to begin manufacturing tires. He said he will first start with the production of rubber bands and other rubber products in a year or so.
According to Mr. Jeety, he does not intend to plant rubber trees but will purchase rubber from local farmers in the country as a way of empowering them.
The US Ambassador was accompanied by his brother George McCarthy who is visiting here in Liberia and an Embassy staff.
Earlier, the citizens praised Mr. Jeety for how his investment has transformed their community in the short period of its existence.
The citizens in a statement read by Clain Chief Madam Musu Yango, said Jeety has improved the economy of the township by leasing properties from them and employing locals from the area.
Mr. Jeety is currently providing university scholarships to some citizens and hot meals three times a week for more than three hundred children in the community.
They also boasted of his humanitarian gestures, the bringing in of pipe borne water and a clinic.
Overall, the citizens said the establishment of Jeety Rubber Factory has restored life to Weala since the closure of the Weala Rubber Plantation.