Monrovia,Liberia-The Alternative National Congress (ANC), Unity Party (UP) and Liberty Party (LP) have recommended some solutions in fixing the current economic problems in the country. The three political parties spoke in Monrovia on Friday during a press conference at the ANC headquarters where they also criticized President George Weah for lacking adequate plan to effectively restructure the Liberian economy during his recent speech on the state of the nation’s economy.
The joint statement which was read by ANC’s Alexander Cummings said that the Liberian dollars have decreased and depreciated in value significantly (by 25%) since President Weah took office, thereby increasing inflation from 17 to 21 percent. In response to President Weah’s call to citizens to exercise patience for long and short term fixes to the economic problems, the joint statement contested that it is a shock that a government that came to power after taking part in three elections as a political party did not have a detailed plan to govern the country and provide economic relief on its citizens. Mr. Cummings through the statement said that a fast implementation of any long term developmental strategy should be the President’s priority as a means if curbing some the economic problems the country is faced with. He said that the opposition is willing to sit with the President and his economic team and present their own ideas on the fixes.
In the meantime, the three political parties called on the government to focus on options that will have immediate impact before developing plans for long term growth. They asserted that the government needs to limit its spending which could help it avoid debts on a country that is already swimming in a sea debts. The parties also called on the government to reduce high tariffs on targeted essential commodities that are imported which would in turn stimulate growth and bring in more revenues to government. In addition, Mr. Cummings highlighted the effects monopoly is having on the economy and said an open market and prioritizing Liberian businesses would affect prices positively by price reduction and products alternatives for consumers. The joint statement by the parties also called for land reforms, regulations and policies that would increase direct local and foreign investments, creation of food safety and inspection unit, formulation and establishment of industrial parks in coastal cities and initiate reforms and strategies that would make the transportation of goods in and out of ports easy.
Cummings in closing said that the implementation of these recommendations will need not just political will, but also technical know-how and added that he hope the government will move in a fast manner to implement the suggested proposals by the three political parties and that they look forward in working along with the government in that regard.