What is this?
An investment forum that will bring together investors, entrepreneurs, and other diasporas with key roles to play in supporting enterprise development in Sierra Leone to connect, interact, and problem-solve to enhance prospects for development of agribusiness enterprises that can contribute to inclusive growth in Sierra Leone. A unique group that features our compatriots in the diaspora combined with a rare appearance by a group of Japanese private companies will descend into Sierra Leone.
Preparing for them are Sierra Leone agro-based enterprises (agribusinesses) that have been selected via an independent company and process. They will offer bankable projects hopefully, to the investors. The names of those companies will be announced in due time.
Who is doing this?
The IOM with funds from the Government of Japan is sponsoring the exercise and it is being coordinated by two Sierra Leonean consultants hired along with IOM staff to execute on the formation and coordination of the project. Other participants include some members of the Sierra Leonean diaspora and some private companies from Japan.
Locally run agribusinesses are also part of the puzzle as is the GoSL with the Min. of Trade and Industry, SLIEPA and SMEDA, among others. The Sierra Leone Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Agriculture is also strategically involved. This is a national event!
Why is the IOM doing this?
IOM believes the Sierra Leone diaspora is an integral and important piece of Sierra Leone’s economic recovery. Engaging this community is considered critical to national development. The IOM a migration- and by default diaspora-oriented organization is most suited for this kind of work.
As an added value to the overall intentions of an investment forum, typically, the IOM has incorporated the visit of about ten Japanese private companies who will accompany twelve Sierra Leoneans from the diaspora into the project.
When/Where is this taking place?
The investment forum is scheduled to be held at the Radisson Blu Hotel in Freetown, Sierra Leone. The dates slated are the 18th and 19th of September, 2018.
How is it being done?
The event itself will be a combination of panel discussions and presentations with a question and answer session that follows. We will break out into workshops and especially have a speed networking event. At the end of each day, we will collect, collate and communicate action items that have been committed to. These will culminate into an action plan that will guide the way forward. Our hope is that this exercise will help put the private sector on a trajectory for transformation.