DEBRE BIRHAN, March 2 (Xinhua) — Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed and Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta on Saturday inaugurated the Chinese-built Debre Birhan industrial park, constructed in Ethiopia’s northern Amhara regional state.
The Debre Birhan industrial park constructed by China Communications Construction Company (CCCC) at a cost of more than 71 million U.S. dollars is expected to create job opportunities to more than 1,000 Ethiopians.
Stretched on 75 hectares of land, Debre Birhan industrial park has eight industrial sheds ready to accommodate prospective investors.
The Kenyan president applauded the Ethiopian prime minister for spearheading Ethiopia’s economic change that has seen Ethiopia inaugurate several development projects including the Debre Birhan industrial park, according to the Office of the Ethiopian Prime Minister’s Office.
Speaking to Xinhua recently, Lelise Neme, CEO of Ethiopia Industrial Park Development Corporation (IPDC), said Ethiopia aims to commission six industrial parks, including Debre Birhan industrial park, before the end of the current fiscal year 2018/19, in July.
“Ethiopia has invested around 1.3 billion U.S. dollars in the construction of around a dozen industrial parks, which it sees as a key strategy of achieving Ethiopia’s industrial ambitions,” said Neme.
“Ethiopia has so far built and commissioned five industrial parks and with the anticipated commissioning of six more industrial parks in 2018/19, Ethiopia’s industrialization ambitions will receive a massive boost,” Neme told Xinhua.
With Ethiopia attracting large-scale investment in the export-import-oriented manufacturing sector, especially from Chinese firms, the country sees improving the efficiency and speed of the logistics sector as key to meet national manufacturing revenue goals.
Ethiopia plans to increase the number of operational industrial parks from the current five to around 30 by 2025, as part of its efforts to make the country a light manufacturing hub and lower-middle-income economy in the same period.