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Vol 3 (AAC) No 2

Published 1st December 2009


The Liberian contribution to the stir-fry

In January, Liberian officials are set to finalise negotiations for a US$1.6 billion palm oil investment deal with Indonesia's Golden VerOleum. The past year has seen a number of feasibility studies into weather and land conditions, and production is scheduled to begin nine months into 2010, should negotiations proceed at pace. Richard Tolbert, Chairman of the National Investment Commission, told Africa-Asia Confidential that a crucial moment for this deal will be the major diligence meeting in January. An insider close to the deal said that a quick start-up was unlikely because the government and the Indonesians were headed for a 'tough' series of negotiations over the fiscal terms. The initial breakdown of the $1.6 bn. includes $850 million to develop the land and associated infrastructure, $400 mn. to build at least 20 palm oil refineries, $250 mn. for housing and $100 mn. for machinery.

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