Recap of 2018- A Year of Growth

This year was one with remarkable changes in Sierra Leone as well as in the SLNBCC. The installation of a new government after the general elections in March had significant repercussions across the en- tire nation. The country moved from the Agenda For Prosperity to a New Direction, with focal points shifting to free education, self-reliance in agriculture and a fight against corruption. The IMF year re- ports of 2017 show concerning figures; real GDP growth dropped from 6% in 2016 to 3.5% in 2017. GDP in 2017 was US$3.74 billion against US$3.737 in 2016. However, the GoSL is working towards creating a supportive business environment that welcomes foreign investors.
2018 was a year of change within the SLNBCC as well. In February, Esther Kamara came to support Binta Jalloh with content-related matters. Her contribution resulted in a two sector scans- on logistics and the medical sector- an extended newsletter and the launch of the SLNBCC Facebook page. Fur- thermore, the SLNBCC was visited by Ambassador Ron Strikker twice this year. During his missions the ambassador held receptions for the Dutch communities, launched the Orange Knowledge Pro- gramme and the EvoFenedex & STC-Nestra training, and witnessed the inauguration of the new presi- dent Julius Maada Bio.
The SLNBCC also supported the EvoFenedex & STC-Nestra customs and logistics support training held in October, where members and non-members in the logistics sector received a free training from Dutch and Cameroonian experts.
Furthermore, SLNBCC signed MoU’s with SLIEPA and SLeCAD, strengthening our network within government institutions. We co-organise events, link members with the relevant people and exchange information. SLIEPA joined the SLNBCC on the Sierra Leone & Liberia Business Seminar in the Hague, where their presence was of significance for potential Dutch investors.
Last but not least, SLNBCC’s membership doubled in 2018 from 12 to 24 members. We heartily wel- come the following new members to our network: Solidaridad, Masada Waste Transformers, Nexus Logistics, Natural Habitats, West African Rice Company (WARC), SL Breweries, Adam Jay Enterprise, Country Lodge Hotel, BBIN SL. Ltd. (BAM), and Shama’s Investment Ventures.

By Esther Kamara (SLNBCC)