Sierra Leone’s minister of Trade and Industry Edward Hinga Sandy has on Friday 23rd July 2021 signed a $240 Million investment agreement with Odhav multi-industries to establish a steel manufacturing and processing plant.

Emmanuel Konjor Acting Chief Director and Professional Head of Ministry of Trade and Industry explained that the ministry’s effort of trade facilitations have resulted in the increase in revenue contributions to the GDP from 3% to 8% from the manufacturing sector. This percentage is steadily moving towards double digits.

Giving an overview of what the agreement entails, Emmanuel Konjor stated that Odhav intends to establish an industry of steel and locally manufacture and process items such as manufacturing plants for oxygen tanks, nails, binding wires, pipes, steel bars and more. This he mentioned is a pathway to ensuring Value addition within the country.

Minister of Trade and Industry Edward Hinga Sandy said the realized value for legal export remained insignificant despite huge export but the Ministry have been working towards curtailing this practice. This processing infrastructure to be established will cut down on import and inflation and increase on revenue. The agreement valued at two-hundred and forty million ($240,000,000) is separated into three phases. The first phase will be a $40million for construction of the plants and factories, a second phase of $80million and a final phase of $80million.

This agreement will cater for a three hundred and fifty million (350,000,000) market size within the ECOWAS basin and assured jobs created for 1200 employees spanning 10 years, Minister Sandy heralded. The agreement has already been approved by cabinet and received Parliamentary approval, which means work on Odhav’s One hundred and fifty hectares of land will commence on an accelerated pace.

CEO of Odhav Multi-Industries Nikhil Chandra complemented the Minister and team for their commitment and thrive in facilitating the agreement and says this plan is earmarked for great things. He furthered that there is a clear nexus between trade and poverty which indicates that the establishing of this business will significantly reduce unemployment and contribute immensely to the economy.