Ethiopia: A great opportunity for investors
By Ambassador Tefera Derbew, Ethiopia’s Ambassador to China
October 10, 2023 (FBC) – Ethiopia is an ancient independent country located in East Africa, at the heart of the Horn of Africa with 120 million people who speak more than 80 languages. Ethiopia has a 3,000-year history of political community and statehood. It is the owner of many UNESCO-registered tangible and intangible heritages. More importantly, Ethiopia is the birthplace of coffee and is one of the leading exporters globally. Its coffee Arabica has a unique aroma, taste, and flavour which is liked by Chinese coffee consumers. Ethiopia is also home to many endemic animals, birds, and plants, world-class athletes, the gluten-free super food Teff and the source of the Blue Nile.
Moreover, Ethiopia is home to the headquarters of the African Union, UN Economic Commission of Africa, and the offices of several regional and international organizations including UNESCO, UNDP and the European Union. Ethiopia which is the second most populous country in Africa, has the biggest and most profitable airline in Africa. Ethiopia is also home to the largest hydroelectric power dam in Africa. Though Ethiopia is a land linked country, Ethiopia is the biggest merchant ship operator in Africa.
Being the third largest economy in Sub-Saharan Africa makes Ethiopia one of the most favored foreign direct investment (FDI) destinations in Africa. Currently Ethiopia is undergoing the second phase home grown economic reform. The ongoing reform which is focusing on economic and investment reforms aimed at creating a conducive investment climate outlined the following sectors as its priority investment fields: manufacturing/textile and apparel, leather & leather products, pharmaceuticals, ICT, agriculture and agro-processing, mining & energy and tourism. The existence of industrial parks, agro-industrial parks, and free economic zone makes it easier for foreign investors to invest in Ethiopia. Recently taken policy measures such as opening up of the financial sector for foreigners and exemption of EV manufacturing from any form of tax makes Ethiopia a more favored destination of FDI in Africa.
Ethiopia and China have enjoyed strong bilateral relationship for more than half a century. Since the establishment of diplomatic ties between the two countries, their friendship evolved in to a comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership level. Their relationship has always been based on mutual trust, friendship and fraternity. Ethiopia-China relationship has registered tangible results for both countries in trade, FDI, economic cooperation, people to people relations. The bilateral relationship will further be deepened in all areas of cooperation.