Posted by / Thursday 5 January 2017 / No comments

The problems of industrialization in Sierra Leone

Definition of industrialization
Industrialization can be defined as the system by which an economy which hitherto produced basic agricultural goods, now manufactures those same goods with the use of machines instead of manual labour and assembly plants instead of skilled artisans.  


Skilled labour
One of the problems confronting industrialization in Sierra Leone is the absence of enough skilled labour to supervise the complex industrial machines that are used in the manufacturing sector. There are few well trained artisans, engineers and the like to operate the sophisticated industrial machines.

The Sierra Leonean civil war
Another problem of industrialization in Sierra Leone is that the protracted civil war of the 90s destroyed the little infrastructure the country used to have. Though attempts are being made to build new infrastructure, the rate of reconstruction is very slow because of the non-availability of funds.

Demand for industrial goods in Sierra Leone
Following from the previous point is the fact that in Sierra Leone, most people are poor and therefore cannot afford the manufactured goods even if they were produced in large quantities. Most factories therefore produce below their installed capacity.

Supply of raw materials
Another basic problem facing industrialization in Sierra Leone is the low supply of raw materials to feed the industries. In some cases, the industrial plants are there but because there are not enough raw materials to feed them, the machines just stay idle at the mercy of the weather till they get damaged or at best, do not run at full installed capacity.

Infrastructural facilities
There is also the problem of lack of enough infrastructural facilities such us good roads, railways, constant supply of water and electricity etc. The civil war had destroyed even the little that was available. The industrial factories need electricity to run 24 hours a day but that is not readily available in Sierra Leone. The factories need a good road network to be able to transport their raw materials and finished goods efficiently. These are not available in Sierra Leone.

Capital to invest
Another problem is the absence of capital to make the initial investment and to re-inject into the business in order to expand. The banks may be willing to help but their interest rates are over the roof so entrepreneurs are not attracted to that option. Even where they are, some are not able to provide the collateral needed by the banks. Sierra Leonean entrepreneurs are not able to access the facility or the loan as a result.

1. What are some of the problems confronting industrialization in Sierra Leone?

2. Highlight six problems of industrialization in your country.

3. a. What is industrialization?
    b. Give five reasons why Sierra Leone is unable to industrialize.

Related Posts