As President Bio Welcomes Chairman Of Dole Asia Holdings… Windfall For Bo District

By Ayodele Deen Cole

President Julius Maada Bio recently received the Chairman of Dole Asia Holdings PTE. Ltd, Mr. David DeLorenzo at State House in Freetown.

Dole Asia Holdings PTE Ltd, is the parent company of Sierra Tropical Limited (STL) one of the many investments facilitated by SLIEPA in recent years.  Giving an overview of the operations of STL over the past four years, Mr. DeLorenzo stated that STL with financing from the parent company based in Japan – ITOCHU has at the moment, with guidance from the Government of Sierra Leone acquired five hundred and seventy four hectares of land from landowners/landowning families from the Lugbu Chiefdom in the Bo district where a proposed pineapple project will be located. This, he said, will be increased in the next three years to a total of four thousand three hundred and thirty five hectares of land where the pineapple and other tropical fruits plantation, cannery and processing facilities will be established.

The company, he further disclosed, has already employed at least four hundred and fifty indigenes of that chiefdom. This, he further stressed, will increase substantially from one thousand to one thousand five hundred by mid-2019 when the Memorandum of Understanding between the Government of Sierra Leone and the company would have been signed.

In his response, President Bio pledged his government’s support towards the furtherance of the company’s operations in the country, whilst calling on its officials to honour their corporate social responsibilities.

Also in attendance were the CEO SLIEPA, Mr Sheku Lexmond Koroma, Presidential Adviser on Trade and Investment, Dr. Abu Karim, CEO/Senior Vice President and Country Manager STL, Mr Patrick Blake, the Company Secretary and legal representative of STL, Mr. Centus Macauley Esq.