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Ethiopia: Origin Africa 2015 International Trade Expo OpensFriday, October 23, 2015 > 10:15:04
(All Africa By Alazar Shiferaw)
The Origin Africa 2015 International Trade Expo aimed at elevating Africa as a source of investment destination for domestic and international investors by showing the continued efforts being made in improving African cotton, textile, apparel and manufacturing products was opened here yesterday.
Opening Origin Africa 2015: Africa Sourcing and Fashion Week Trade Expo at the Millennium Hall, President Dr. Mulatu Teshome said: “Our long- term vision is to make Ethiopia the leading country in light manufacturing industry in Africa and also to achieve middle income status by 2025.” Special attention is given to the manufacturing sector, one of which is the textile industry as it is core for value-addition, generating foreign currency, creating job opportunities and technology transfer.
President Dr. Mulatu further said that the government will continue with its efforts of expanding and developing the necessary infrastructure. “Our Second Growth and Transformation Plan envisages further expansion in power, road networks and railway lines."
Dr. Mulatu stressed that the government is committed to crate conducive and enabling environment to create a secure, stable and accessible investment climate for the private sector both local and foreign to play a pivotal role in the country's economic development.
“We believe that with the combined effort of the private sector and African governments, the production size of African manufacturing sector in general and textile and apparel sector on particular will definitely be in critical mass stage to meaningfully take advantages of the opportunities that exist in Africa and the rest of the world,” Dr. Mulatu said.
The President said that government attaches great importance to the exhibition as it brings together in one platform manufactures, buyers, sector specialists and policy makers to dwell on African investment potential and to promote the continent's textile industry.
Industry Minister Ahmed Abitew on his part said that the event is expected to strengthen collaboration with producers across the cotton value-chain from far of fashion, including accessory suppliers, home textile, among others, to develop guide and promote African trade. ''As you know, trade and investment provide two of the most important link among Ethiopia, sub-Saharan Africa and the Untied States of America."
“This event is timely to us as it is being conducted at the launching of our Second Growth and Transportation Plan which focuses on developing the manufacturing sector in general, textile and garment sector in particular to bring about structural shift in the economy.”
Moreover, as the sector is labour intensive and key in increasing employment opportunity and incur equity to citizens of Ethiopia,the government supports the event as it has apparent importance to attract more quality investment and international trade to the sector, the Minister said.
Ethiopia has chosen the promotion of investment as a path for development in supporting this endeavour. “We thank among other countries the US government in assisting us in encouraging US investment in Ethiopia through USAID East African Competitiveness and Trade Expansion Programme.”
US Ambassador to Ethiopia Patricia Haslach said through USAID East Africa Trade and Investment Hub, the United States government is supporting talented African manufactures and designers to find and enter higher value markets for their products.
The apparel industry is one of the best sources for driving urban employment and export growth. It has helped to lift thousands of people out of poverty.
Ethiopian Textile and Garment Manufacture's Association President Fassil Taddesse said that Ethiopia is aggressively working to be the hub of textile and garment in Africa in the next decade.
Origin Africa 2015 Trade Expo will stay open until October 23, 2015.