The leone has depreciated 21.7% against the dollar this year, according to Bloomberg data, making it the world’s ninth-worst performer.

In July, Sierra Leone slashed three zeros from its banknotes in a bid to restore confidence in the currency even though the move had no direct bearing on its value.

The country earns most of its foreign exchange from agriculture and mining minerals including iron ore and diamonds.

A new mining licensing round is expected to bolster state revenue and its ability to support the population, according to Sierra Leone’s Deputy Finance Mnister, Bockarie Kalokoh.

The government is also reconsidering tax waivers and cutting expenditure after taking the “politically risky” step of spending 22% of its budget on education and the development of human capital, he said.

“When you look at the debt burden, it’s tough for most of us,” said Kalokoh. “It’s our obligation to ensure we put safety nets in place to take care of some of our people and we are looking forward to our donors supporting us.”

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