South African companies keen to invest in Ethiopia

South African investors and representatives of companies have expressed their readiness to invest in Ethiopia and do business with.

A South African business delegation comprising 22 investors and representatives of companies are currently in Ethiopia to explore investment potentials and opportunities in the country, particularly in manufacturing, agro-processing, energy and construction sectors.

State Minister for Foreign Affairs, Dr. Aklilu Hailemichael met with the South African Business Delegation on Monday (March 6, 2017) and briefed them on investment prospects in Ethiopia. 

Dr. Aklilu  underscored that the delegation's current move will promote Ethiopia's aspiration to boost the intra Africa trade and enhance south-south cooperation.

He said, "Ethiopia attracts investors from China and Turkey as well as the US and Europe; nevertheless we would like to also promote south-south economic cooperation between African countries."

Touching upon the huge investment potentials in Ethiopia, the State Minister said, "Ethiopia's geographic location, its active membership in regional and bilateral trade agreements, including various other platforms with the U.S, EU and COMESA region, and the favorable investment policies make it an attractive investment destination."

Ethiopia's young and productive work force which accounts for 60 percent of the population also offers significant comparative advantages to investors, he added.

President Sahlework Zewude held discussion with heads of FAO, UNESCO, and FIFA at the National Palace on Feburary12/2019.

In her meeting with FAO Director-General, José Graziano da Silva, the President shared view on food security issues in Africa.

Briefing journalists after the meeting, Graziano said “We also report on gender balance inside the organization, particular here in Africa, where we believe that women can play a vital role in development especially in agriculture and food security.”

According to the Director General, the World Food and Agriculture Organization is strengthening its cooperation with Ethiopia on the ways of sustaining food security as the current reform has created a favorable platform.

UNESCO Assistant Director-General for Priority Africa and External Relations, Firmin Edouard Matoko for his part said his organization is working on boosting up cooperation with Ethiopia.

He pointed out that UNESCO is in view of evaluating the situation in Lalibela and it will launch a big project to restore the historic rock-hewn church from damage.

Likewise, FIFA Under Secretary-General Fatima Samba Diouf Samoura, has discussed with President Sahlework on Ethiopia’s football development and the FIFA’s memorandum of understanding reached with the African Union and African Football Confederation (CAF).

According to the Under Secretary General, FIFA is keen to work with Ethiopia on education, governance, safety and security on football infrastructure.

FIFA has opened its third regional office in Africa in Addis Ababa, the office is fully functional and hosted training for 16 members of the Football Association of Ethiopia, she said.

A court has approved on February 02/2019 the adoption of an orphan from Kibebe Tsehay Orphanage by Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed.

The adopting parents applied to the court to get approval for the adoption of Million on January 22, 2019, it was learnt.

The family promised that the life of the child would be better off.

The court approved the adoption in light of the fact that the agreement is in the best interest of the child.

The court confirmed that Million could not give comment on the adoption agreement since his age is under two years.

On the occasion, Supreme Court President Meaza Ashenafi said the decision taken by Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed and First Lady ZinashTayachew is exemplary to others to adopt needy children.

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Appreciating Zinash for appearing before court to adopt the child, the president said it revealed that all of us are equal before the court.

Women, Children and Youth Minister Yalem Tsegaye said on her part the legal adoption made by the family of the PM is important lesson for others to make adoption through legal process.

In this regard, she called on all to adopt children either from orphanages or other institutions. 

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President Sahlework Zewde warmly welcomed German President, Frank-Walter Steinmeier at the National Palace on January 28/2019.

They discussed on ways of enhancing relations between the two countries in the areas of trade, investment and other business sectors.

President Sahlework Zewde said that “the visit of the President of the Federal Democratic Republic of Germany is not only vital but also important as the country is under ongoing multiple sets of reforms.”

His visit helps to further strengthen the historical relations between Ethiopia and Germany, which dates back to 1900s, she added.

President Sahlework stated that they discussed on ways of boosting their relations in terms of trade, investment and people to people relations.

“Germany is the right development partner of Ethiopia, we would like to continue and improve it further,” she noted.

She expressed Ethiopia’s commitment to work closely with the government of Germany in the regional peace and security issues in partnership with German Security Head Quarter in African Union.

German President, Steinmeier on his part appreciated the ongoing reform in Ethiopia and parity of women in the cabinet.

He added that the nomination of half of women in the cabinet promotes women’s participation in the political arena of the country.

“It is a role model for African and beyond; you cannot find country that its cabinet consists of 50 percent of women,” the President indicated.

He stated that the reform sent a message across Africa and will correct the image of the continent in terms of politics and development to the rest of the world.

The reform undergoing in Ethiopia creates new opportunities and potential for enhancing bilateral relations between Germany and Ethiopia, he noted.

Germany supports the reform in the country in terms of giving vocational training for the youth and investment in different sectors of the country. 

In the last 50 years Germany has been supporting incentives in education, health, technical and vocational trainings and biodiversity.

Currently, there are 35 German companies in Ethiopia engaged in different investment areas.

Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed has praised Germany for its long-term and consistent technical and vocational support to Ethiopia.

Abiy received the President of the Federal Republic of Germany, Frank Walter Steinmer and his delegation, who are currently visiting Ethiopia.

During the occasion, the Premier appreciated the long-term and consistent technical and vocational support of the government of Germany to Ethiopia.

According to Office of the Prime Minister, Premier Abiy shared the three pillars of the ongoing reforms as being grounded in individuals, ideas and institutions.

President Steinmer on his part acknowledged the elevation of Ethiopia-German relations to reforms cooperation and confirmed the strengthening of these relations.

President Frank-Walter Steinmeier has welcomed by President Sahlework Zewde at the National Palace.

The two presidents held talks on ways of boosting up bilateral relations between Ethiopia and Germany, it was learned.

Volkswagen, the automobile giant of Germany, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on January 28/2019 with Ethiopian Investment Commission that will enable it establish a car assembly facility in Ethiopia.

The MoU was signed by Abebe Abebayehu, Commissioner of EIC and Thomas Schaefer, Head of Volkswagen Sub-Saharan African Region.

German President, Frank-Walter Steinmeier witnessed the signing.

Ethiopia has become the third country in Sub-Saharan Africa to sign MoU with Volkswagen to start casr assembly in the last six months after Ghana and Nigeria.

The MoU paves way for Volkswagen and the Ethiopian government to jointly deliver on the vision of developing a suitable and vertically integrated automotive industry cluster in Ethiopia.

Speaking at the occasion, EIC Commissioner Abebe Abebayehu affirmed that the government of Ethiopia is fully committed to support the establishment of specialized clusters.

He also pledged that the nation will work proactively with Volkswagen and all key government agencies to effectively translate this partnership into concrete action and actual investments.

Thomas Schaefer, Head of Volkswagen Sub-Saharan African Region appreciated the government of Ethiopia for its support and identifying the automotive sector as one of the key manufacturing industries.

He added that the MoU has been signed with Ethiopia is a demonstration that Volkswagen is gaining momentum in the Sub-Saharan region. 

“As one of the fastest growing economies and with the highest population in the continent, Ethiopia is an ideal country to advance Volkswagen’s Sub-Saharan Africa development strategy, he stated.

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