American Business Council launched in Sierra Leone
The American Business Council of Sierra Leone (ABC) has recently been officially launched as a forum for United States and Sierra Leonean companies to strengthen commercial ties between the two countries.
The American Business Council according to Scott Risner Economic and Commercial Officer Embassy of the United States of America in Sierra Leone will engage local businesses and the Government of Sierra Leone through the Ministry of Trade and Industry, and Sierra Leone Investment and Export Promotion Agency (SLIEPA) to build a more conducive environment for private sector growth.
During the launching of the ABC Ambassador John Hoover pledged that “the US Mission will work closely with the American Business Council to attract more US Investment, promote trade and support the development of Sierra Leone.”
The American Business Council President Vincent Balogun noted that the ABC will focus on creating a platform for the exchange of ideas, establishing good business networks, advocating for better business environment with sound policy synergies and sharing best practice in industry.
The ABC is a voluntary association of companies and individuals doing business in Sierra Leone to share the goal of promoting trade, business and commerce between the two countries.
According to Scott Risner Economic and Commercial Officer Embassy of the United States of America in Sierra Leone, the ABC is working inline with the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) which gives trade benefits for companies in Sierra Leone to export their products to America.
He said that the America Business Council help Companies to understand how to sell their products to the American market.
He said AGOA trade preferences are in many kinds of sectors like textile and food products which a lot more Sierra Leonean companies can do.
“ABC will be helping companies to export better products and get easy access to US markets.”
He clarified that the American Chamber of Commerce no longer exist and the American Business Council is currently the major link to the American Markets.
“We can facilitate for local companies in Sierra Leone to export and sell their products to America through AGOA on a fair price that meet International standards” Risner said.
He said Sierra Leonean companies can produce beverage, smoked fish and other locally manufactured products for export to the US.
He disclosed that some American based companies that are operating in the country over the years include Coca Cola Company, AFRICELL and GEO, which took over the Marampa mines in Lunsar
He explained that most American companies are ready to invest in Sierra Leone through joint venture and partnership with local companies.