Ethiopia: Bengal businesses invited to invest in ‘industry-friendly Ethiopia’

KOLKATA: With an attractive “package of incentives including exemption of income tax, import duty, export tax incentives and a one-stop shop service at the Investment Commission” on offer, Ethiopia made a loud case for itself as a country of “unlimited opportunities”.

“I invite you all to explore these opportunities and invest in my country,” Molalign Asfaw, Minister Counselor I (Business), Ethiopia, told a large assembly of Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) from West Bengal at the inaugural session of MSME Conclave 2017 organised by CII here at the CII-Suresh Neotia Centre of Excellence for Leadership on Friday.

“The country is entitled to duty-free and quota-free access to US market under African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA), a United States Trade Act, and preferential access to EU and many developed countries,” he explained.

“Ethiopia offers inexpensive and trainable labour force and the lowest energy cost in the world. The country is potentially one of the largest domestic markets in Africa with 100 million consumers whose purchasing power is growing,” Asfaw said.

Not only has Ethiopia adopted investor-friendly policies, it is also peaceful and secure. That explains why the country has seen booming economic activities where the private sector plays a pivotal role, he said.

“Ethiopia has joined the group of nations that are fast moving in economic development. It has now become the largest economy in the sub-Saharan Africa after South Africa and Nigeria, and one of the largest recipients of FDI in Africa,” said Asfaw.

MSMEs are not only a potent instrument of change they are also an engine of economic growth and equitable development in developing countries, including Ethiopia, which has undergone “major changes in political, social and economic spheres and gained remarkable achievements, both politically and economically.”

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