Ethiopian PM inaugurates Chinese – built industrial park

ADDIS ABABA, Oct. 08 (Xinhua) – Ethiopian
Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed on Sunday inaugurated Adama industrial park, located
74 km southeast of Ethiopia’s capital, Addis Ababa.

The industrial park, built by China Civil
Engineering Construction Company, is part of the Ethiopian government’s grand
plan to transform the country’s largely agrarian economy into an industrialized
one by 2025.

Covering 100 hectares of land and built at a
cost of around US$146 million, Adama industrial park is expected to create job
opportunities for around 25,000 Ethiopians.

The industrial park, designed and built with
international standards, has integrated facilities including clinics, fire
services, a market center, a bank, cafes, and exhibition facilities.

“The inauguration of the Adama Industrial
Park is crucial to meeting the industrialization needs of Ethiopia and
fulfilling the employment and human resources development of our higher
education graduates,” Prime Minister Ahmed told the inauguration ceremony.

Ahmed said that with his administration’s
political reforms undertaken since April almost complete, the focus from now on
will be to meet the economic needs of the country’s estimated 105 million
citizens. 

Emphasizing the Adama industrial park’s
strategic location, Ahmed said its close proximity to the Chinese-built 756 km
Ethiopia-Djibouti electrified rail line and the 99 kilometres Addis-Adama toll
expressway will ensure that the industrial park will be a successful addition
to the country’s manufacturing ambitions.

Chinese Ambassador to Ethiopia Tan Jian shared
the prime minister’s assessment of the new industrial park.

The east African country’s focus on building
industrial parks, coupled with good economic policies and strong economic
growth, is evidence that it wants to transition from a primary agricultural
products and raw materials exporter to a sophisticated, industrialized economy.

Ethiopia has so far commissioned five
industrial parks and plans to commission six others during the current
Ethiopian fiscal year 2018/19, which started on July 8. 

“Despite recent economic pains,
Ethiopia’s economic future is definitely bright as shown by the successful
completion of five industrial parks, with the latest being Adama,” Tan
said.

“Chinese firms prioritize human resources
development, as it is more important than financial and natural resources.
Chinese cooperation with Ethiopia emphasizes synergizing with the east African

The commissioning of Adama industrial park
will be a welcome addition to boost the Belt and Road Initiative, Tan added.

Arkebe Equbay, special adviser to Prime
Minister Ahmed, said the industrial park’s commissioning is one giant step
forward to meet the country’s manufacturing ambitions.

Adama industrial park is expected to attract
firms engaged in textile, apparel and machinery production sectors. 

“Adama industrial park has already
attracted investors from China and South Korea, raising hopes other industrial
parks that are being built by the Ethiopian government and private developers
will have little problem attracting investors,” Equbay said.

He said the construction of industrial parks
is part of the government’s efforts to structurally change the economy to make
it competitive globally.

“Ethiopia is working to resolve issues
with intermittent electricity supply, has recently opened its logistics sector
to foreign investment and is modernizing its banking and customs services to
meet international standards of companies investing inside industrial
parks,” Equbay said.

GNA

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