Liberia. In February, an independent report on what happened to the newly printed banknotes worth a total of Liberian $ 15.5 billion (equivalent to close to US $ 100 million) was presented, which according to a rumor had disappeared in the fall of 2018. The investigation showed that the banknotes were stored in the central bank’s cash register. Several central bank executives were criticized for not having control over the banknote flow and for having printed far more banknotes than they were entitled to do. In August, five previously high-ranking officials at the central bank were brought to trial, accused of refusing to claim part of the profits for millions of newly printed banknotes 2016-18. Among the defendants were former Governor of the Central Bank Charles Sirleaf, the son of President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf.
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In June, President George Weah invited the opposition to a roundtable talk through a radio talk where the country’s economic crisis would be discussed. Just a week earlier, a newly formed opposition group called the Patriotic Council had organized public protests that attracted thousands of people on the streets of the capital, Monrovia. The participants showed their dissatisfaction with the high inflation and corruption among the power holders. In addition, demands were made that human rights should be respected to a greater extent than before. Unless an action plan was drawn up within four weeks, new protests would be organized. President Weah was persuaded by the West African cooperation organization ECOWAS and the African Union (AU) to abandon plans to organize counter-demonstrations. In his speech, he acknowledged that the designated problems exist, but he claimed that these were a legacy of the previous administration. He also expressed his appreciation that the opposition protests were peaceful.
In September there were reports that about 20 people died during the year in lasso fever, a viral infection that is transmitted to the group of haemorrhagic fever (haemorrhagic fever) and spread with rodent urine and from person to person via blood. There is no specific treatment for the disease. Deaths are generally uncommon.
According to CountryAAH, the population of Liberia in 2019 was 4,937,263, ranking number 123 in the world. The population growth rate was 2.460% yearly, and the population density was 51.2601 people per km2.
LIBERIA. – Presidential republic headed by a president, who is also the head of the government and holds office for eight years. The territory is divided into nine counties. The population (1,503,368 residents, with a density of 13 residents per km 2, in the 1974 census) shows a sharp increase compared to the 1962 census (when it counted 1,016,443 residents). The annual growth coefficient is in fact very high (1.7%). Monrovia (96,226 residents In 1970) does not mark a significant increase given the hostile climate, characterized by copious rains (3874 mm per year) and high temperatures (25.6 °), with minimal variations during the year; however, it is home to an oil refinery and a cement factory. In 1972, 900,000 tons of goods entered its port and 11.4 million out of goods (mainly iron ores).
Agricultural crops, both those destined to meet the needs of the indigenous people (rice, cassava, corn), and those destined for export (coffee, citrus fruits, cocoa, peanuts) have not undergone significant changes, as have forest essences (oil palm, Raphia vinifera which supplies the piassava, hard woods); rubber exports are on the rise (1975: 83,000 t).
Instead, in the mining field, Liberia has become one of the main exporters of iron ore (16,888,000 tons exported in 1972 and 14,620,000 in 1973).
To the hematite and magnetite mines of Bomi Hills, exploited since 1945 and connected (since 1951) with a railway line (74 km) to Monrovia, a line which in 1961 was extended, narrow gauge, to Mano River (160 km) near the border of Sierra Leone, site of a second field, were added those of Mount Nimba, discovered in 1955, which provide a good quality mineral of the Precambrian age, free of phosphorus, high content, easy to extract (open sky). Before being exported, the mineral is enriched near the mines using modern mechanical means, so the original landscape of the shadowy forest has been completely modified; then by means of a standard gauge railway (300 km) with trains capable of pulling 90 wagons, it is transported to the coast, where in Buchanan a completely new dedicated port has been built, modernly equipped, capable of accommodating ships of 65,000 tons. The ore is mainly shipped to the United States and to the countries of the European Common Market (Taranto is about 5000 km from Buchanan). Even more recent (1965) is the discovery in a sparsely populated area on a hill surrounded by tropical forest, of the Bong deposit, which exports the mineral through Monrovia; Italsider, associated with German steel companies, has a stake in these mines. Also in this case the mineral, which is extracted in the open, is enriched (raising the content from 33 to 64-65%). In 1970 the four main mines exported: Nimba Range 11.7 million tons; Bong Range 5.2; Mano River 3.8; Bomi Hill 2.8.
While the gold mines are almost exhausted, the production of industrial diamonds (890,000 carats in 1972), produced in artisan form in the Saniquellie region and W of Kpo, continues to be important. In February 1967, the Mount-Coffee electrical plant on the Saint-Paul River was inaugurated, providing electricity to Monrovia.
The Liberian merchant navy ranks first in the world (30 June 1975) with 2,520 ships and 65,820,000 gross tonnage (1955, 3.9 million; 1970, 33.5 million), but these are ships from other countries, which fly a “flag of convenience” for the particular facilities granted to shipowners by the Liberian government.
The main airport is in Robertsfield, within the perimeter of the Firestone hevea plantation, which enjoys the right of extra-territoriality.
Trade sees iron ore (70.5%) and rubber (16.9) at the top of exports (1970-74); diamonds, coffee, cocoa, palm nuts are far less important. In both imports and exports, the United States ranks first; The main buyers of iron are also Germany, Italy and Japan.