“Despite the Covid-19 pandemic, Indian businessmen have continued to explore investment opportunities in Ethiopia,” Muraleedharan

Maintaining that trade and investment ties between India and Ethiopia are among the most notable of many ties, Minister of State for External Affairs V Muraleedharan on Wednesday said more than 607 Indian companies with investment over US $5 billion are there in Ethiopia.

“These Indian companies give employment to about 75,000 Ethiopian nationals,” Muraleedharan said, while speaking at the India-Ethiopia Business Forum, organised by ASSOCHAM on Wednesday.

He added that EXIM Bank of India has its regional office in Addis Ababa, attesting further to India’s recognition of Ethiopia’s economic weight in the region.

Giving details of Indian investments in Ethiopia, he said about 61 per cent of investments are in the manufacturing sector, followed by agriculture which accounts for 14 per cent investments.

“Some of our well-known companies like Cadila, Tata, S&P, Kanoria Textile, Mohan Groups, Anmol Products, Arvind Mills, Asian Paints, Ethio Cement, Best International, Allana Group, Farida Tanneries, Hansa Flowers are in Ethiopia,” the MoS said.

He said Ethiopia with a highly-educated and skilled populace, has posted double digit growth rates over 15 years. “These attributes are due to the sound economic policies of its leadership,” MoS Muraleedharan said.

“Despite the Covid-19 pandemic, Indian businessmen have continued to explore investment opportunities in Ethiopia. During the last one year, we have had 35 new Indian investments in Ethiopia. Let me take this opportunity to express appreciation for the Ethiopian Government’s effort in creating a congenial environment for foreign investments and in particular for facilitating Indian companies to invest in Ethiopia and carry on their business,” the Minister said.

“India is also one of the largest trading partners of Ethiopia. However, there is still scope to expand and diversify trade between the two countries and I am certain that our two business communities are working towards this objective,” the Minister said.

“Another important aspect of our bilateral relations is our development partnership. We are happy that Ethiopia continues to be one of the largest recipients of India’s concessional loans or Lines of Credit in Africa,” he added.

“Our Lines of Credit are based on the priorities of our partner countries and also aim to share our expertise as well as the lessons of our own experiences in developing our infrastructure and our educational institutions and so on with our friends,” the MoS maintained.

“I am glad that our development partnership covers sectors such as rural electrification and the sugar industry and consists of a total of 6 Lines of Credit amounting to US$ 705 million extended to Ethiopia,” he said.