United Arab Emirates (UAE) companies are showing growing interest in investing in Ethiopia, especially with the economic reforms and liberalization being undertaken by the Ethiopian government, UAE ambassador to Ethiopia said.
In an exclusive interview with ENA, Ambassador Mohamed Salem Alrashedi said Ethiopia is an important investment partner for the UAE in East Africa as it has a large and emerging consumer market of over 100 million people.
The vast diversified resources and untapped economic potentials in many sectors such as health, clean energy, technology, and telecommunications are luring to UAE companies.
“With the economic reforms and liberalization undertaken by the Ethiopian government, the country has become a preferred destination that attracts foreign investment,” the ambassador added.
He noted that there are many UAE companies engaged in investment in Ethiopia, most notably Julphar Pharmaceutical Industries, Al Ghurair Aluminum Group, and Falcon Factory.
According to Ambassador Alrashedi, relations between UAE and Ethiopia are historical and based on trust, mutual respect and common interests.
“The relations have in particular witnessed remarkable progress during the past few years after Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed assumed power in Ethiopia, which gave the relations more momentum to reach the level of strategic partnership,” he noted.
The two countries are cooperating in political, economic, social and security, and development is one of the major areas of cooperation focusing on empowerment of women and youth.
He pointed out UAE’s Khalifa Fund for Enterprise Development (KFED) has signed 100 million USD agreement with Ethiopia to support and finance small scale and medium enterprises in Ethiopia, including youth and women projects.
Besides, both countries have interest to strengthen people-to-people relations, especially in social, cultural and tourism fields, and to explore new areas for cooperation that contribute to promoting ties between the peoples.
Responding the global coronavirus pandemic, “UAE has provided emergency medical aid to more than 45 countries, including Ethiopia,” he revealed.
Speaking about future cooperation, Ambassador Alrashedi pointed out that the health sector is one of the main areas of cooperation.