Economy

Ethiopia seeks investments from India

Our Bureau Chennai | Updated on November 15, 2017

Seeking support: Ms Gennet Zewide, Ambassador, Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, is greeted by Mr Manikam Ramaswami, CMD, Loyal Textiles Mills and Honorary Consul of Ethiopia in Chennai, as the Chennai Mayor, Mr Saidai S. Duraisamy, looks on at a function to mark the opening of the honorary consulate, in Chennai on Monday. — Bijoy Ghosh   -  Business Line

Once known only for diseases, malnutritioned children and endless wars, Ethiopia is today the world’s third fastest growing economy and an emerging favourite for Indian investments.

Ethiopia has been growing a dizzy pace of 11 per cent in the last eight years, and, according to its ambassador in India, Ms Gennet Zewide, is “working hard to be where India is, at present.”

To this end, it seeks “trade tie-ups with India to further enhance the growth of our economy”, said Ms Gennet Zewide, Ambassador, Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia to India. Ethiopia seeks investments from India in sectors such as plantation, farming, leather, textiles, steel, hospitality, food processing and education.

Ethiopia has the lion’s share of India’s line of credit for Africa where the country secured about $710 million for rural electrification and rehabilitation of its sugar industries. The Indian government has also committed to building a railway line between Ethiopia and Djibouti which will make Ethiopia the highest beneficiary of India’s constructive engagement in Africa.

Ms Zewide was in Chennai to inaugurate Ethiopia’s honorary consulate in the town, and to announce the appointment of Mr Manikam Ramaswami, Chairman and Managing Director of Loyal Textile Mills Ltd, as an Honorary Consul in Chennai.

Thanking Mr Ramaswami for accepting to be a Honorary Consul, she said he

in addition to investing in agriculture, he had spent his time and resources, experiences and expertise to make Ethiopia’s textile industry to thrive. She said that with a specific reference to one of the country’s oldest textile mill which was revived by him.

Addressing a question on air connectivity between India and Ethiopia, she said currently Ethiopian Airlines connect Mumbai and Delhi, and is likely to connect Chennai “may be with three flights a week” very soon. <suggested blurb>

Addressing government officials, business leaders and representatives from various business chambers, she said Ethiopia is a ‘power surplus’ country. Currently, there are many Indian companies engaged in agriculture, leather, mining and manufacturing making India as one of the biggest group of foreign investors in Ethiopia. “We are a poor country and working hard to be where India is at present. Our GDP has been growing at 11 per cent for the last eight years, thanks to the support of friendly countries such as India.”

Inviting investments in sectors such as dairy products and pharma industries, she said though Ethiopia has a huge cattle population, the country does not have the necessary technology and facility to process dairy products. It has been experiencing severe shortage of dairy products in a big way. Similarly, in the pharma sector too, the country does not have enough production facilities to cater to its 80 million population. Ethiopia particularly needs investments in the space of generic drugs.

Earlier, delivering the welcome address, Mr Ramaswami described Ethopia as the fastest growing country in Africa, very safe with practically zero violence and zero corruption, transparent policies, transaction cost free administration, nice locations and above all it had India friendly people.

Describing Ethiopia as a favourite destination for Indian investors, Mr Sai Ramakrishna Karuturi, Managing Director of Karuturi, which has invested in the floriculture sector in that country, said besides various other advantages, it will facilitate duty-free entry into the US and Europe.

Published on January 30, 2012

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