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Ethiopia would be among Malta’s key partners in Africa: Envoy

Addis Ababa, March 12, 2024 (FBC) – Maltese Ambassador to Ethiopia, Ronald Micallef, said that Ethiopia would be one of Malta’s key partners in Africa.

The 1st Ethiopia-Malta Business Forum was held today in Addis Ababa with the objective of fostering bilateral relations between the two countries.

Speaking on the occasion, Ambassador Micallef said the approach is long sighted and trade and partnership would be the key word that defines the relationship between the nations.

Partnership is an essential starting point which implies trust a commitment to shared vision, a sense of purpose, reliability, he added.

According to the ambassador, the countries have made great strides in terms of creating trust through engagement over the past two years.

The Embassy of Malta has also been active in a range of areas which include diplomatic training, cyber diplomacy programs, and engagement with key entities in Ethiopia in order to ensure that political dialogue is matched with people-to-people benefits.

“Trade is the result which follows trust. We are confident that Malta and Ethiopia have built up the necessary momentum to ensure that this trade mission objective can be met. Malta’s strategy for Africa underscores the belief that trade and partnership should benefit both sides. In this regard, I have often highlighted that Malta and Ethiopia are natural partners for trade.”

Both countries have tangible contributions to make to each other, Ambassador Micallef stated, adding that Malta has a strong economy within small market and Ethiopia has the markets and seeks to modernize swiftly to create more jobs.

Foreign Affairs State Minister Mesganu Arga recalled that the visits made by Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed to Malta in February last year and Malta’s Foreign, Trade and European Affairs Minister Ian Borg in May 2022 have cemented the relationship between the countries.

Ethiopia’s ambitions to become one of the leading economies in Africa, and the gateway to business and an aviation hub in Africa will open huge opportunities for international investors.

Moreover, Ethiopia’s membership in AfCFTA and accession to WTO are opportunities that attract foreign direct investment and connect Ethiopia’s economy to African market, he added.

The minister thus called on Maltese investors to exploit the immense and lucrative business opportunities in Ethiopia.

“I would like invite Maltese investors to exploit the immense and lucrative business opportunities in Ethiopia. I believe you will all be satisfied with what you will observe during your stay here and look forward to engaging with you in the future.”

Ethiopian Investment Commissioner, Hana Arayasilassie explained Ethiopia’s favorable investment climate, further noting that the Ethiopian government has been hugely investing in infrastructural development and energy in addition to opening up the economy for foreigners.

Ethiopia offers a number of opportunities across a wide sector, especially in areas of manufacturing and agriculture, including ICT as the country moves towards digitalization.

The commissioner pointed out that “Ethiopia offers very big opportunity for foreign investors and domestic investors across a wide range of services. The other thing you should consider when you think about investing in Ethiopia is the commitment of the government for the private sector.”

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