Monrovia — To support local manufacturing and infrastructure development in Liberia, the International Finance Corporation IFC announced a partnership with Fouta Cement Corporation (Fouta Cement), Liberia’s second largest cement supplier, to help it increase production and reduce Liberia’s dependence on imported building materials. .
A financial package arranged by IFC, and announced on the sidelines of the Africa CEO Forum, will help Fouta Cement build and operate a cement grinding plant in Monrovia with an annual production capacity of 350,000 tons, creating 250 jobs during the exploitation.
The financial package of up to $21.2 million consists of a loan of up to $5.4 million from IFC’s own account, a loan of $10.8 million from the blended Private Sector Window of the International Development Association (IDA PSW BFF) and a loan of up to $5 million. million to be mobilized from Bank of Africa United Kingdom.
Liberia’s vast infrastructure gaps, compounded by years of conflict, are hampering the country’s economic and social development. Increasing local cement production will provide developers with a reliable and affordable source of critical building materials, supporting new roads, bridges and other infrastructure that Liberia needs for growth and job creation.
“IFC’s suite of long-term investment and advisory services gives us the foundation and support we need to grow from a dealer to a manufacturer, adding more value and creating more jobs in Liberia.” said Hamidou Gnan, general manager of Fouta Cement.
“IFC’s partnership with Fouta Cement comes at a critical time for Liberia as it recovers from the economic effects of COVID-19 and seeks to address the country’s longstanding infrastructure needs. The investment is also IFC’s largest in Liberia in recent years and is a strong demonstration of support for the private sector and the country’s growth,” said Sérgio Pimenta, IFC Vice President for Africa.
IFC will complement its investment with advisory services to help Fouta Cement implement environmental and social (E&S) best practices and build its internal E&S and occupational health and safety capabilities.
The new plant will allow Fouta Cement to stop importing finished cement. The shift from cement imports to imports of clinker – a constituent of cement – will reduce Fouta Cement’s import weight by 20%, reducing its net greenhouse gas emissions by approximately 3,200 tonnes of CO2 equivalent per year .
IFC’s strategy in Liberia focuses on supporting agribusiness, manufacturing, and access to finance.