Ambassadors Say Reforms in Ethiopia Will Attract Investors

Addis Ababa September 12/2018 The reforms underway in Ethiopia would help to create favorable conditions that attract more investors in various areas, resident representatives of various countries said.

In an exclusive interview with ENA, Indian, Turkish, Korean, and Swedish Ambassadors to Ethiopia said they are impressed by the recent reforms taken in the political and economic spheres.

Indian ambassador to Ethiopia, Anuraga Srivastava said the economic reform of Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed has clearly generated a lot of interest among Indian investors.

More investors from India are looking at various investment opportunities, including food processing, plastic, leather and garment, among others, he stated, adding that a number of foreign companies have already shown interest to partake in the investment opportunities extended by the government.

Big global companies from India are studying the partial privatization initiative as some of them have already been operating in Africa. So, they are closely watching the developments in the country.

Ambassador Srivastava pointed out that India “would like to participate in the economic reforms as we are a close economic and political partner of Ethiopia. We stand ready to participate in the process.”

Commenting on the development in the bilateral relations between Ethiopia and Eritrea, he said “I think this is again something that brings a lot of hope and enthusiasm in this region.”

Turkish Ambassador Fatih Ulusoy said his government has expressed support for the government of Ethiopia for the reform measure it has been taking in the country.

 “We are very happy to see these reforms and encourage Ethiopia to continue with the reform. Actually, we think opening up Ethiopia’s economy will help attract more investors to Ethiopia.”

Noting the significance of the steps taken by the government on the partial privatization, he urged Turkish investors to focus on the program initiated by Ethiopia.

With regard to efforts of normalization between Ethiopia and Eritrea, Ambassador Ulusoy said “I think the normalization between the countries will bring new momentum not only politically, but also economically. It will bring more investment, more projects and infrastructure to connect the two countries.”

Korean Ambassador to Ethiopia, Lim Hoon-min said his government supports the major reforms in the country, including the one to make the economic more open.

“The Korean government has expressed support to the reforms that the new PM Dr. Abiy Ahmed has been pursuing since he came to power. We highly value his approaches to establish inclusive political culture and also take various measures which transcend boundaries, tribes and regions; specially sending the message of unity and harmony.”

According to Ambassador Hoon-min Lim, Korea exerts great effort to contribute to the sustainable stabilization and prosperity of the Horn of Africa as well as the current Ethiopian initiative to improve relationship with neighboring countries, including Eritrea.

Finland’s Deputy Ambassador to Ethiopia Jukka Pajarinen said considerable changes have been happening in the country and the Horn of Africa region, paving the way for peace and mutual development.

“Foreign investors and businesses always wanted to predictability in a way; and they need a business climate that is conducive for the room on businesses and it seems that more businesses are now interested in coming to Ethiopia, a country with very impressive economic growth.”

All citizens of the country should work to implement this reform in a way that will benefit not only Ethiopia but the whole African region, he added.

Deputy Ambassador Pajarinen stated that Ethiopia seems to have embarked on a new sort of strategy that attracts businesses and increases possibilities of private companies to invest in Ethiopia.

Swedish Ambassador to Ethiopia Torbjorn Petersson said “we the Swedish are very positive to the change we have seen. We think that it has been a long wish of the Ethiopian people to have freedom of speech, media freedom and peace with neighboring countries.”

All these things are very much welcome, he stressed, adding his hope that the reforms would unify the country, stop hostility and protests in some parts of the country as well as in increase the economic performance of the country.

The reforms and strategies will be very productive for Ethiopia in terms of increasing jobs and revenues from exports.

Many measures, including partial privatization of state-owned enterprises, freeing of the media and releasing thousand of prisoners as well as normalizing relations with Eritrea, have been taken since Prime Minister Abiy came to power.