Govt. Stakeholders Hang Heads
The Ministry of Trade and Industry, Finance and Economic Development, Agriculture Forestry and Food security in collaboration with other ministries, Department and Agencies, private sector and Civil society will be organizing a two days seminar on the December 4th-5th, 2017 on Made In Sierra Leone (MiSL) brand campaign on the topic Improve Local Productivity and Competitiveness which will be followed by a week of exhibition of Goods and Services made in sierra Leone from December 4th -9th Mitta conference Centre, Brookfields, Freetown.
Mr. Konjoh, Local content policy Unit welcome the Made in Sierra Leone brand Campaign and the theme of the seminar, improve Local productivity and Competitiveness noting that the country’s domestic economy needs to be develop.
He noted that the brand campaign consist of five Ministries to help build the capacity of the locals with the private sector intending to play a very big role pointing out that the local content policy is not a new concept.
Konjor added that the reason for the country state of poverty is because citizens don’t value their own produce which he attributed to a leaking bucket of once economy.
The Local content expert said most of the country’s eatables are imported which indicates that the country resources, hard work goes to other countries.
Mary Hawa Turay, Agribusiness Developed Expert said the new concept is timely owing to the fact that row materials are in abundant for processors that the farmers will make income out off.
She continued that most of the goods produce by farmers are perishable goods therefore the need for processing and marketing is paramount to enable farmers have monies in their pockets.
A Tourist Officer, Ministry of Tourism and Cultural Affairs, Abdul Malick Kamara said the tourist industry is a growth sector in the country aim at promoting local context policy, competitiveness and job creation along side with other line ministries and agencies.
He said the ministry position is to ensure that local produce should be used in all local establishments like hotels and other public outlets adding that local leaves like cassava, potato leaves must be process to meet international standards.
Konjor added that local Art and crafts, internal houses decorations, hangings and painting must be used in hotels and restaurants including local contractors to depict traditionally structure.
Representative from the Ministry of Fisheries and Marine Resources, Osman Sheku Kamara said his ministry contributed fifty billion Leones annually to the country consolidated funds adding that the country fishes are highly rated in the international market.
He continued that as a result of the quality of fishes in the Sierra Leone waters many of it is exported out of the country pointing out that the made in Sierra Leone brand Campaign is a perfect opportunity for the nation to start caning fish especially when World fish has surface in the country to help individual grow fish from its tail stage to eating stage.
Oluniyi Robin–Coker, said a country Gross Domestic Product (GDP) will only increase when the country is making the things they consume.
He said there is no need for the country to be imported metal doors from the Far East when the country is rich in woods which only need value to be added to.
Currently, imported goods and services the bulk of the country consumer goods market, regardless of the fact that many products are produced and grown locally, factors including perception, cost, quality, availability and awareness hampered their demand.
Vital supporting sectors, like the marketing and packaging services, that would make it easier and cost effective to run a local business and help to improve quality and perception for local goods are nascent and poorly fit for the market.
It is believed that the following objectives would be achieved: re-establish focus on and momentum around government Made in Sierra Leone effort as a major priority, assess what has been achieved to date and review the state of play, identify challenges and bottlenecks to progress and identify solutions, Agree way forward and modalities for working on Made in Sierra Leone initiative and tracking progress and build consensus.
By Donstance Koroma
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