Established with a mandate to oversee Liberia’s pension administration, NASSCOPRP collects contributions, pays benefits and invests into institutions for the sustainability of financial solvency as enshrined in 89.63 of both the new NASSCORP Act and Decree 14. Addressing a news conference yesterday Director General VonBallmoos indicated that the Corporation is non-partisan and has no direct or indirect link to any political party in Liberia and will never be a part of any spending that is not fiscally prudent for the survival of the Corporation least to dish out money to a political party.
He stated that the Corporation, in fulfillment of its mandate and with the authorization of its Board of Directors, in August 2016 approved an investment in the amount of US$1.5 Million (One Million Five Hundred Thousand United States Dollars) equivalent in Nimba Rubber Incorporated (NRI) for the rehabilitation of its Cocopa Plantation. “NASSCORP’s investment involved the purchase of convertible debentures of NRI with a maturity of five (5) years which provides NASSCORP an annual interest (yield) of 12% on its investment. The debenture also gives NASSCORP the added advantage or option of converting the facility into common stocks of the Corporation in the future. The facility was disbursed in November 2016 to NRI at a ratio 80:20 in Liberian dollars and U.S Dollars, respectively and the debentures are to be redeemed in full at maturity in U.S Dollars,” he mentioned. He pointed out that the NRI’s Management had approached NASSCORP close to two years ago with a proposal for financing the rehabilitation of Cocopa plantation but NASSCORP had turned down the request given the lack of clarity of a comprehensive plan for the revitalization of the rubber sector despite intervention of the government and a stimulus package for the sector provided by the Central Bank of Liberia (CBL). “A revised rehabilitation proposal from NRI which was approved by NASSCORP in August 2016 set out four (4) key priorities, namely: the settlement of wage arrears, acquisition of a new modern rubber processing plant, rehabilitation of plant infrastructure and the establishment of rubber wood processing facility; and the investment made by NASSCORP was primarily used and targeted at the settlement of wage arrears owed to workers of the Corporation,” he said. He added: “the success of Cocopa in the future will benefit hundreds of rubber farms and farmers not only in the immediate vicinities of Nimba, but also set a higher benchmark for the pricing of rubber throughout the breadth of the country. The plantation hires close to 500 workers and by extension affects the economic livelihood of more than 2,000 individuals. Employment will increase as a result of this investment as well as create higher wages for the workers of the plantation.”