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Ease of Doing Business in

Liberia

Liberia Download Profile (1734KB, pdf)
Region Sub-Saharan Africa
Income Category Low income
Population 4,503,438
GNI Per Capita (US$) 380
City covered Monrovia

190

1

DB 2017 Rank

1

100

DB 2017 DTF (% points)

  • local_library
  • group
Topics DB 2017 Rank DB 2016 Rank info_outline Change in Rank DB 2017 DTF (% points) info_outline DB 2016 DTF (% points) info_outline Change in DTF (% points) info_outline
Overall 174 174
0
41.41 41.53 down
0.12
Starting a Business 37 33 down
4
92.49 92.49
-
Dealing with Construction Permits 175 172 down
3
49.21 49.64 down
0.43
Getting Electricity 177 178 up
1
33.28 33.81 down
0.53
Registering Property 179 179
-
33.62 33.66 down
0.04
Getting Credit 101 97 down
4
45.00 45.00
-
Protecting Minority Investors 179 181 up
2
28.33 28.33
-
Paying Taxes 72 69 down
3
76.07 76.21 down
0.14
Trading across Borders 185 185
-
17.64 17.75 down
0.11
Enforcing Contracts 176 175 down
1
33.92 33.92
-
Resolving Insolvency 168 168
-
4.59 4.54 up
0.05

DB 2017 Rank: 175

DB 2016 Rank: 172

Change in Rank: down3

DB 2017 DTF (% points): 49.21

DB 2016 DTF (% points): 49.64

Change in DTF (% points): down0.43

STANDARDIZED WAREHOUSE
Estimated value of warehouse: LRD 1,612,752
City: Monrovia
Indicator Liberia Sub-Saharan Africa OECD high income
Procedures (number) info_outline 22.0 13.9 12.1
Time (days) info_outline 74.0 149.1 152.1
Cost (% of warehouse value) info_outline 6.9 7.2 1.6
Building quality control index (0-15) info_outline 2.0 7.2 11.3
  • Measure of efficiency
    No. Procedure Time to Complete Associated Costs
    1

    Submit plans to Ministry of Public Works

    Agency: Ministry of Public Works (MPW)

    The application file should include 2 copies of the site plan; letter of request addressed to the Deputy Minister; the land deed; and the architectural, structural, and mechanical drawings. These documents are passed from one official to another for approval at the Ministry of Public Works (MPW) before the building permit is issued. Physically all departments are located in different parts of the city which may delay the approval.

    The documents are submitted internally at the MPW in the following order:
    • Office of the Deputy Minister, Technical Services
    • Office of the Assistant Minister, Technical Services (initial recipient)
    • Land-Use Planning and Zoning Division (initial site plan and document review). There are no thorough checks with the National Archives on the authenticity of the land documents, ensuring that is the responsibility of the owner of the warehouse.
    • Chief of Zoning (physical site approval)
    • Chief of Architecture (design approval)
    • Chief of Electromechanical Engineering (electrical and mechanical approval)
    • Chief of Engineering (structural approval and billing)
    • Finance Section (payments)
    • Land-Use Planning and Programming (signature on permit)
    • Office of the Deputy Minister, Technical Services (permit attached)

    A temporary building permit can be granted after the second step above, when the Land-Use Planning and Zoning Division conducts an initial site plan and document review. This temporary permit can be obtained within one week. It is granted for a maximum of 90 days, but this is an exception rather than the rule. In practice, a permit is accorded after all steps mentioned above have been completed. As a result of the weak enforcement of building regulations, partly a result of the post-conflict situation, many private construction projects take place without following the official guidelines.
    1 day no charge
    2

    Receive inspection from Ministry of Public Works (Zoning Division)

    Agency: Ministry of Public Works (Zoning Division)

    It takes about 3 days for the Zoning Division to process an application. The Zoning Division will contact the applicant to inform them that they will need an inspection. There are only 4 inspectors and resources are limited, so the applicant has to provide transportation for them.
    1 day no charge
    3

    Obtain payment slip from the Ministry of Public Works

    Agency: Ministry of Public Works (MPW)

    Once all the technical departments have reviewed the application, the Finance Department creates a payment slip. BuildCo must pick up the payment slip and then go the Central Bank to pay the fees. The fee for design approval for commercial buildings is USD 0.05 per sq. ft.
    1 day USD 700
    4

    Obtain construction permit from the Ministry of Public Works

    Agency: Ministry of Public Works (MPW)

    BuildCo must return to the Ministry of Public Works (MPW) with the payment receipt and the application is then processed for final approval. The process at the MPW from submission of plans (procedure 1) to approval used to take 3 months, but reforms introduced in 2008 reduced the processing time for simple building permits to 1 month. The MPW established a 30-day statutory time limit for the issuance of building permits. The MPW also introduced a checklist to clearly define all of the documents required to complete the application. Now all applications are scrutinized on submission to check for completeness and accuracy before being forwarded for processing. The reform eliminated the Minister’s signature on building permits for simple construction projects. By rule, the Minister's consent is only required for projects with a value greater than USD 1 million or that involve a foreign government. However, in practice the Minister or Deputy Minister still approves projects that are less than USD 1 million in value.
    28 days no charge
    5

    Obtain construction clearance from the City Corporation of Monrovia

    Agency: City Corporation of Monrovia

    After obtaining the design approval from the MPW, BuildCo must obtain a separate construction clearance from the Planning Department at the City Corporation of Monrovia. The Planning Department takes 1 day to review the plans and then prepares a payment slip which is usually paid the next day.

    City Corporation of Monrovia as of May 1, 2009 abolished 3% fee charge, based on project value, for issuing a building permit and replaced it with a fixed fee of USD 0.04 per sq. ft. for new commercial and industrial construction projects.

    However, practitioners note that this fee is "negotiable". Applicants can pay a less amount, which is official, for a clearance that will last for a shorter period of time. There are no fee schedules posted at the City Corporation and often, builders are asked to pay much higher fees.
    2 days USD 560
    6

    Receive inspection from the Ministry of Public Works - I

    Agency: Ministry of Public Works (MPW)

    The construction of the warehouse can commence after the building permit is obtained. There is no requirement to request inspections at any stage of the construction process. However, building inspectors and engineers are often dispatched from the Ministry of Public Works to inspect construction sites to see to what extent the construction conforms with the originally submitted drawings. Over the course of 6 -- 7 months, inspections occur randomly at a rate of every 3 weeks or as often as every week. Construction work stops only if the plans have not been complied with.
    1 day no charge
    7

    Receive inspection from the Ministry of Public Works - II

    Agency: Ministry of Public Works (MPW)

    1 day no charge
    8

    Receive inspection from the Ministry of Public Works - III

    Agency: Ministry of Public Works (MPW)

    1 day no charge
    9

    Receive inspection from the Ministry of Public Works - IV

    Agency: Ministry of Public Works (MPW)

    1 day no charge
    10

    Receive inspection from the Ministry of Public Works - V

    Agency: Ministry of Public Works (MPW)

    1 day no charge
    11

    Receive inspection from the Ministry of Public Works - Vl

    Agency: Ministry of Public Works (MPW)

    1 day no charge
    12

    Receive inspection from the Ministry of Public Works - VII

    Agency: Ministry of Public Works (MPW)

    1 day no charge
    13

    Receive inspection from the Ministry of Public Works - VIII

    Agency: Ministry of Public Works (MPW)

    1 day no charge
    14

    Receive inspection from the Ministry of Public Works - IX

    Agency: Ministry of Public Works (MPW)

    1 day no charge
    15

    Receive inspection from the Ministry of Public Works - X

    Agency: Ministry of Public Works (MPW)

    1 day no charge
    16

    Receive inspection from the Ministry of Public Works - XI

    Agency: Ministry of Public Works (MPW)

    1 day no charge
    17

    Receive inspection from the Ministry of Public Works - XII

    Agency: Ministry of Public Works (MPW)

    1 day no charge
    * 18

    Register with the Liberia Water and Sewer Corporation

    Agency: Liberia Water and Sewer Corporation (LWSC)

    1 day no charge
    19

    Receive inspection from the Liberia Water and Sewer Corporation

    Agency: Liberia Water and Sewer Corporation (LWSC)

    The Liberia Water and Sewer Corporation inspects the site to prepare a cost estimate for the pipes and installation.
    1 day no charge
    20

    Obtain water and sewage connection

    Agency: Liberia Water and Sewer Corporation (LWSC)

    Water connections can be made if existing pipelines pass through the construction site. If that is the case, then the water connection should take 1 -- 2 weeks. The cost for water connection includes LRD 250.00 for the connection itself and USD 50.00 for the meter. If a water pipeline does not pass through the area, then BuildCo must buy all the necessary materials to extend an existing pipeline to the construction site before the connection is made. This will inevitably add cost and time to the utility connection process.
    14 days USD 54
    21

    Request and obtain occupancy permit

    Agency: Ministry of Public Works (MPW)

    In the recent year the Ministry of Public Works started more rigorously enforcing the regulations of the Zoning Law. According to article 5. A of the Zoning Law all new building must obtain an occupancy permit before being used. Stricter enforcement has led to wider practice by companies to obtain the occupancy permit. This is issued within 10 days.
    10 days no charge
    22

    Register the building at the Probate Court

    Agency: Probate Court

    This registration of the completed building occurs in two stages. First BuildCo must register the building with the Probate Court, similar to a notarization procedure. Registration at the Probate Court takes 3 days and costs LRD 300.00. The case considered here assumes that BuildCo does not employ a lawyer (lawyer’s fees would amount to USD 250.00). Registration is not required, but companies do so to increase the resale value.
    3 days LRD 300

    * Takes place simultaneously with previous procedure.

  • Measure of quality
    Answer Score
    Building quality control index (0-15) 2.0
    Quality of building regulations index (0-2) 0.0
    How accessible are building laws and regulations in your economy? (0-1) Not easily accessible. 0.0
    Which requirements for obtaining a building permit are clearly specified in the building regulations or on any accessible website, brochure or pamphlet? (0-1) List of required documents; Fees to be paid. 0.0
    Quality control before construction index (0-1) 1.0
    Which third-party entities are required by law to verify that the building plans are in compliance with existing building regulations? (0-1) Licensed architect; Licensed engineer. 1.0
    Quality control during construction index (0-3) 0.0
    What types of inspections (if any) are required by law to be carried out during construction? (0-2) Unscheduled inspections. 0.0
    Do legally mandated inspections occur in practice during construction? (0-1) Mandatory inspections are not always done in practice during construction; Mandatory inspections are done most of the time during construction. 0.0
    Quality control after construction index (0-3) 0.0
    Is there a final inspection required by law to verify that the building was built in accordance with the approved plans and regulations? (0-2) Final inspection is not required by law. 0.0
    Do legally mandated final inspections occur in practice? (0-1) Final inspection does not always occur in practice. 0.0
    Liability and insurance regimes index (0-2) 0.0
    Which parties (if any) are held liable by law for structural flaws or problems in the building once it is in use (Latent Defect Liability or Decennial Liability)? (0-1)  No party is held liable under the law. 0.0
    Which parties (if any) are required by law to obtain an insurance policy to cover possible structural flaws or problems in the building once it is in use (Latent Defect Liability Insurance or Decennial Insurance)? (0-1) No party is required by law to obtain insurance . 0.0
    Professional certifications index (0-4) 1.0
    What are the qualification requirements for the professional responsible for verifying that the architectural plans or drawings are in compliance with existing building regulations? (0-2) University degree in architecture or engineering; Being a registered architect or engineer. 1.0
    What are the qualification requirements for the professional who supervises the construction on the ground? (0-2) Being a registered architect or engineer. 0.0