Ours is a country of great promise and potential. I look forward to welcoming you to our country. - His Excellency Julius Maada Bio, President of Sierra Leone
Official Statement of President Julius Maada Bio
Sierra Leone is committed to establishing a diversified and resilient economy by creating a conducive environment for private sector growth. We have created an investment board co-chaired by me and the Vice President to facilitate the investment process and provide necessary after-care for investors. We have revamped the regulatory and legal framework to protect investments. We have significantly simplified and shortened the process of registering, establishing, and running a profitable business in Sierra Leone and we continue working to revamp various related institutions. We have clarified and simplified the multisectoral incentives for private sector investments.
We continue to clamp down heavily on corruption because we believe that corruption stifles good business and good governance. The Millennium Corporation Challenge, an independent United States Foreign Agency, recently assessed the country as scoring 71 from a low 47 just a year ago. We have established strong macro-economic fundamentals and multilateral partners, including the World Bank and International Monetary Fund, have re-established relations and expressed confidence in our capable handling of the economy. We will continue to invest purposefully in infrastructure and strongly favour investments in renewable energy. Our priority is opening up our entire country to diversified private sector growth.
Sierra Leone continues to enjoy peace and we have had five successive democratic elections and three peaceful transfers of power to democratically-elected presidents. We maintain the advantage of location with a long Atlantic coastline and the deepest natural harbour in the region and we have recently expanded port facilities. With rich mineral deposits, a lush landscape traversed by rivers, pristine beaches and islands, and a rich marine area, we encourage private sector investment in agriculture and agribusiness, tourism, fisheries, and mining.
Labour is readily available in Sierra Leone with an active youthful population including 51% of women. We have invested heavily in human capital development with access to free quality education and industry-specific vocational skills training for young adults. The objective is to increase the pool of highly skilled young workers in the country. I have established a Directorate of Science, Technology, and Innovation in the Office of the President in order to seed, test, and scale technology for private sector growth, governance, research and education, and public service delivery.
We have developed a comprehensive medium term development plan that lays out our country’s development priorities in understandable clusters. We want to work with development partners and the private sector in realising the best outcomes. We acknowledge that there are challenges, but my government is determined to continue working diligently to make Sierra Leone an easier and better place to do business.
This revised edition of the Guide gives an independent account of recent and upcoming developments that will help propel Sierra Leone towards realising its full investment potential. It provides a unique insight into the numerous opportunities on offer. Ours is a country of great promise and potential and we are offering win-win outcomes to all our investors.
I look forward to welcoming you to our country.
His Excellency Julius Maada Bio,
President of Sierra Leone
Joint Letter from Herbert Smith Freehills LLP, Standard Chartered Bank and Prudential plc
We are delighted to have worked together to produce this guide to investing in Sierra Leone, highlighting the opportunities the country offers, providing context for potential investors and outlining resources that potential investors can draw on.
As global businesses with a long-standing commitment to Africa in general – and Sierra Leone in particular – we are passionate about supporting Sierra Leone in its goal of reaching middle-income status. While challenges remain, the country offers a range of underlying growth and investment opportunities.
The financial and professional services sector has an important role to play in supporting the building of stronger banking, insurance and legal frameworks in Sierra Leone. We are absolutely committed to working with the Government of Sierra Leone and international partners and investors to help the country achieve its full potential.
We hope that this Investor Guide will serve as a useful resource for all those with an interest in helping Sierra Leone on its path towards economic growth.
Herbert Smith Freehills LLP, Standard Chartered Bank and Prudential plc are very grateful for the assistance provided in the compilation of this Guide by the Government of Sierra Leone including the Tony Blair Global Institute for Change, Easy Solar, Nectar Group, Manocap, Solon Capital Partners, the Sierra Leone Investment and Export Promotion Agency, the UK Department for International Development, the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office and the UK Sierra Leone Pro Bono Network.