MONROVIA, Liberia – Chinese and Liberian higher-ups and workers began constructing Liberia's first plywood manufacturing plant a few weeks ago.
 
Shangyou Wood Industries Development Company, the Chinese rubberwood furniture maker behind the project, says the plant will be running by 2020 and employ 5,000 Liberians.
 
In addition to the facility, Shangyou will supply educational materials to local schools, build a community basketball court, and teach local residents the Chinese language. Eric Chen, the company's general manager, told FrontPageAfricaOnline that teaching Chinese and building up the community will make relations easier with local Liberians.
 
FrontPageAfricaOnline reports that there has been resistance in other parts of Liberia to a foreign company using "community land." Shangyou said they didn't encounter any resistance in the local area.
 
Company officials also said there would be challenges with finding the right type of rubberwood.
 
“Finding the right type of rubberwood in Liberia is extremely difficult,” Chen told interviewers, according to FrontPageAfricaOnline.
 
More information was not immediately available. We'll update this story as more comes to light.

 

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