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.
Permanent Under-Secretary at Foreign and Commonwealth Office of the United Kingdom, Sir Simon Gerard McDonald, said his country and Ethiopia share common agendas in international peace and stability concerns.
Foreign Affairs State Minister Taye Atskeselassie held discussion with Sir Simon Gerard McDonald about the bilateral relations of the two countries.
Following the discussion, the permanent under-secretary told reporters that the countries share common agendas in regional and international peace and stability issues.
He noted that the countries are heavily involved in ensuring peace and stability in the East African region, in Somalia and South Sudan in particular.
Sir McDonald said the two countries will also cooperate closely to improve conditions of refugees sheltered in Ethiopia.
Foreign Affairs State Minister, Taye Atskeselassie, said on his part Ethiopia and UK share similar interests.
The state minister noted that the active participation of the two countries in Somalia and South Sudan is showcase for the strong cooperation.
He said Ethiopia needs to further strengthen its partnership with UK during its tenure at the UNSC in particularly bolstering the capacity of peace enforcing organs and ensuring peace and stability of the East African region as well as the continent as a whole.
It is also the desire of Ethiopia to strengthen its age-long historical relation with UK in the economic frontier, Taye concluded.
Prime Minister Hailemariam Dessalgen conferred with high-level US Foreign Affairs officials in New York on maintaining sustainable peace in East Africa.
Hailemariam met with Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield, Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs, and Shannon Smith, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State.
During the discussion, the premier reaffirmed Ethiopia's commitment to maintain a leading role in ensuring peace and stability, particularly in Somalia and South Sudan.
He said his country has been striving to bring the South Sudanese conflicting parties to negotiate since fighting broke out between them.
Ethiopia is also meeting its role in making the region free from terrorism by fighting against Al Shabab.
Prime Minister Hailemariam further explained to the officials about the recent unrest in some parts of the country and the efforts being undertaken to solve the problem.
According to him, the government has identified the root causes of the conflict and it has been carrying out various measures to tackle the problem.
The US has expressed its support for Ethiopia's efforts to create peace and stability in the East Africa in particular and in the continent in general, Ethiopia's Ambassador to USA, Girma Birru, told the Ethiopian News Agency.
According to Ambassador Girma, who attended the meeting, the officials are pleased with solutions the government has been providing to the conflict that occurred in some parts of the country.
Prime Minister Hailemariam is in New York to attend the 71th United Nations General Assembly.
US President Barack Obama has praised Ethiopia's role in hosting and supporting refugees as well as efforts to improve their condition.
Speaking in a panel organized at the sidelines of the 71th UN General Assembly meeting being held in New York, President Obama said the role Ethiopia is playing in sheltering refugees and helping them access to humanitarian assistance is exemplary to others.
Noting that Germany, Turkey, Pakistan, Canada and Sweden have also playing important role, Obama urged other countries to share these practices so as to address challenges refugees have been facing.
At the panel Ethiopia, Canada, Germany, Jordan, Mexico and Sweden share their experiences in sheltering large number of refugees and activities to improve their conditions.
Prime Minister Hailemariam Dessalgen said that Ethiopia will continue to provide shelter to refugees and activities to improve their condition.
The government is providing the chance for refugees to get access to education and engage in income generating activities including agriculture, Hailemariam said.
The government is facilitating conditions to make refugees access to 30 percent of job opportunities to be created in various industrial parks, as part of improving their condition, he added.
Currently 65 million people, roughly 1 percent of world's total population, displaced worldwide.
Ethiopia has been sheltering more than 800,000 refugees.
World leaders are discussing ways of tackling the growing global migration crisis, the biggest migration crisis in which the number of displaced people surpassed those of World War Two, at the 71st UN General Assembly being underway in New York.
Globeleq, developer, owner and operator of electricity generation, has expressed its desire to invest in Ethiopia.
Following discussions with Ethiopia’s Foreign Minister Tedros Adhanom, Head of Business Development, East Africa at the Globeleq told reporters that the Company is interested to invest in the power generation particularly in renewable energy.
The company is desirous to bring the expertise and resources to Ethiopia to realize this. “We will like to bring our international expertise and resources to invest in building more power plants,” Wright said,
“We are the largest power producers in Africa for private generation; we want to bring what we done in Kenya and Tanzania to bring that to Ethiopia.”
The country’s potential for a renewable energy and the ever increasing demand for power created by the fastest economic growth is attracting companies to engage in the country.
During his meeting with the Minister, the Head discussed on ways of encourage Globeleq Company to invest in power sector in the country, it was indicated.
During the discussion, the Minister affirmed that companies are encouraged to engage in the power sector.
The Minister assured that the government will provide the necessary support to Globeleq and other companies interested to engage here in the power sector.
Founded in 2002, Globeleq has around 2,500 mw of power projects in development and plans to add significant mw of power generation during the next 10 years.
Ethiopian Diasporas living in Ottawa, Canada, have contributed 14,500 Canadian dollars to the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD), according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The money was collected at a fund raising event organized in connection with the Ethiopian New Year.
During the occasion, Nebiat Getachew, First Liaison Officer with Ethiopia's Embassy in Ottawa, said consolidated efforts are underway to complete the construction of the dam and called on the Diaspora to further extend their support.
Public Relations Head of the Council for GERD in Ottawa, Kidane Gebremariam said Ethiopians and foreigners of Ethiopian origin in the city have been extending continuous support to the dam since its launching.
He stated that this fund raising program was the sixth and will continue till the completion of GERD.
Professor Taj Elkhazin, Sudanese scholar at Carleton University's Institute of African Studies, noted that the earlier treaties on Nile were unfair as they did not involve all the stakeholders.
According to Professor Taj Elkhazin, the dam under construction by Ethiopia is laudable as it is meant to benefit all the stakeholders and integrate the region.
Representative of Ottawa’s Mayor, President of Africa-Canada Association and invited guests have attended the event.