A German and Bavarian business delegation headed by Ulrick K. Rieger, deputy head of the department of Internationalization, accompanied by delegates from Bavarian Ministry of Economic Affairs and Media, Energy and Technology is visiting Ethiopia with the aim of assessing the potentials of the country.
The delegation was briefed about the business and investment potentials as well as incentives put in place to luring more companies.
Fitsum Arega, Commissioner of the Ethiopian Investment Commission briefed the delegation stating that, “Ethiopia, with the fastest growing economy, untapped natural resources and a population of almost 100 million and good access to lucrative domestic and external markets is a desirable investment destination.”
The availability of labor force with minimum wage, vast arable land, livestock and mineral resources are few among the country`s endowments, the Commissioner added.
The business delegation is expected to visit industrial parks the country has been developed as part of the strategy to attract more industries as well as textile and garment, leather, agro processing, chemicals and pharmaceuticals and metal engineering industries, among others.
Regassa Kefale, State Minister of Foreign Affairs on his part said that the nation is engaged in development of infrastructure so as to facilitate the situation for structural transformation.
“We have set-out important strategic goals that geared towards structural transformation in the economy focusing on industrialization. Light manufacturing industries will play a key role in this regard. This is a country with a huge comparative advantage on the development of massive agriculture resources cheap and trainable labor,” he added.
Exemption from customs duties and two to ten years of exemption from income tax for investments on priority areas are some of the incentives.
Investors also enjoy the preferential trade opportunities with the US and EU, he added.
Ulrich K. Rieger head of the delegation said, “Now the members of this delegation are 20, but I think next time it will be more. In Bavaria 130 companies are interested to do business in Ethiopia.’’
The main reason they chose Ethiopia as a preferable investment destination is because of potential investment opportunities in energy, waste management and installations of power plants, he added.
Evidences shows that, over 144 German based companies have been set up in Ethiopia, of which 77 have already embarked on investment undertakings amounting to 150 million USD, while the rest are on pre-implementation stage.