The U.S. established diplomatic relations with Liberia in 1864; 17 years after it declared independence from the American Colonization Society, an organization that resettled free African-Americans and freed slaves in Liberia. Liberia is gradually recovering from the impact of the Ebola epidemic. Following the Ebola crisis, the U.S. continues to partner with government donors, international organizations especially the World Health Organization, and civil society to strengthen health systems in Liberia. U.S. assistance and engagement is critical to Liberia’s long-term development.
U.S. Assistance to Liberia
U.S. assistance is focused on consolidating democratic progress; improving capacity, transparency, and accountability of governance institutions; promoting broad-based, market-driven economic growth; improving access to high-quality educational and health services; and professionalizing Liberia’s military and civilian security forces, while helping Liberia build capacity to plan, implement, and sustain its own development efforts in each sector.
Bilateral Economic Relations
Liberia is eligible for preferential trade benefits under the African Growth and Opportunity Act. The country's revenues come primarily from rubber and iron ore exports, and revenues from its maritime registry program. Liberia’s U.S.-owned and -operated shipping and corporate registry is the world’s second-largest. U.S. exports to Liberia include agricultural products (with rice as the leading category), vehicles, machinery, optic and medical instruments, and textiles. The main imports from Liberia to the U.S. are rubber and allied products; other imports include wood, art and antiques, palm oil, and diamonds. The U.S. and Liberia have signed a trade and investment framework agreement.