Discusses key economic indicators and trade statistics, which countries are dominant in the market, the U.S. market share, the political situation if relevant, the top reasons why U.S. companies should consider exporting to this country, and other issues that affect trade, e.g., terrorism, currency devaluations, trade agreements.
Last Published: 3/29/2019
Liberia’s economy is market-based and largely dependent on natural resources, foreign aid, and foreign direct investment. Liberia relies primarily on commodity exports (mainly rubber, iron ore, and gold) as major sources of export earnings.  Binding constraints to economic growth include inadequate infrastructure (particularly roads and electricity), limited access to finance, cumbersome tax regulations, declining global market prices of export commodities, weak institutional capacity, and a shortage of skilled labor.  According to the Central Bank of Liberia (CBL), real GDP growth in 2017 was 2.5 percent, an improvement over 2016’s negative 1.6 percent growth.  The expansion in GDP was driven mainly by increased activities in mining, especially gold, agriculture and fisheries, and services.
 
Average annual inflation for 2017 was 12.4 percent, up from 8.8 percent in 2016, mainly due to the depreciation of the Liberian dollar against the United States dollar and the rise in global petroleum prices.  Export earnings at the end of 2017 stood at $388.8 million, largely driven by a rise in gold, rubber, and iron ore exports, while import payments were $1.02 billion.  Liberia’s leading export destinations in 2017 were the Middle East (Turkey), Europe (mainly in the Eurozone), and the United States, while imports came largely from China, neighboring African countries, and Europe. (The share of the Middle East region in total exports increased due to shipment of gold to Turkey by Turkish-owned MNG Liberia which operates the Liberty Gold Mines-Avesoro Resources in western Liberia and MNG-Gold in central Liberia).  Since joining the World Trade Organization (WTO) in July 2016, the government continues to streamline relevant laws and regulations to standardize its trade and investment policies consistent with internationally acceptable norms. 
 
Liberia celebrates its longstanding historical ties to the United States, which persist today in the form of familial relationships and robust diplomatic engagement.  U.S. companies receive an exceptional welcome in Liberia, and retailers routinely seek opportunities to stock American-made goods. 

Prepared by our U.S. Embassies abroad. With its network of 108 offices across the United States and in more than 75 countries, the U.S. Commercial Service of the U.S. Department of Commerce utilizes its global presence and international marketing expertise to help U.S. companies sell their products and services worldwide. Locate the U.S. Commercial Service trade specialist in the U.S. nearest you by visiting http://export.gov/usoffices.



Liberia Trade Development and Promotion