British, Turkish Firms Eying Ethiopia’s Vast Agricultural, Energy Investment Potentials

Investors from the United Kingdom (UK) and Türkiye said they have recognized huge investment potentials available in Ethiopia, of which they will soon engage in the spheres of agriculture and energy sectors.

‘Invest Ethiopia 2023,’ international investment forum held in Addis Ababa from 26th April to 28th 2023 under the theme "Invest and Grow in Ethiopia – Land of Attractive Investment Opportunities," had brought together many global companies.

Approached by ENA, British and Turkish investors said that the investment opportunity in Ethiopia is absolutely enormous particularly, in agriculture and energy.

In its Homegrown Economic Reform Agenda as a pathway to prosperity, notable

investment promotion is one of the priorities in the structural transformation of the Ethiopian economy, it was learned.

More importantly, the government’s growth strategy calls for structural reforms designed to strengthen the private sector and increase investment as an approach to accelerate Ethiopian prosperity.

Accordingly, foreign investors described Ethiopia as top of the African continent for Foreign Direct Investment (FDI.)

As Ethiopia is emerging from a two-year long conflict and taking a bold decision to stabilize the political and economic situation, the country is preferable for business and investment, said British Mark J Lumsden Taylor, at MHA MacIntyre Hudson, specialized in agriculture and finance.

“As I heard from your Governor of the National Bank of Ethiopia (NBE), the currency stability and inflation stability seems to be under control. The other was the war which the country is now stabilizing from a political perspective. More importantly, there is an appetite from Ethiopia that it wants investment in this country. I would say before five or six years ago that wasn't the same.”

Taylor added Ethiopia is seeking to work with international business and the country is reforming its regulatory as well as bureaucracy for conducive investment.

He also revealed that his company is dealing with the Ethiopian Investment Commission (EIC) to engage in the agriculture sector.

“What we want to do is we're working with agriculture particularly, in the coffee market, and in avocados, and completely change the market. We have our charity arms...but agriculture is primary,” he stated.

Taylor also went on as saying: “I suppose secondarily, if this goes well, we'd like to look at financial services as an organization.”

As a result, his company will certainly invest in the agriculture sector in the near future in the southern part of Ethiopia and he pledged to provide charity service to the young population.

“We're looking to bring certainly to the southern part of Ethiopia initially to drive economic growth, economic prosperity, but also make a difference to the children in Ethiopia as well. We are also going to push a percentage of it (revenues) back into the schools that we have built to support the young people so they can get better skills, better ability to contribute to the economy of Ethiopia.”

When asked about the investment potential of Ethiopia, the investor described the country as impressive: “an almost incredible investment destination.”

“This is a country where people perceive Ethiopia is not what Ethiopia is. It is a totally different, country to what the perception is outside. I urge other investors to make connections with senior Ethiopian officials or partners and build relationships.

The people of Ethiopia are some of the best people I have met in my entire career and I've been around the world and I've seen all sorts of different traditions, different cultures, and this is one of the best I've met,” he underscored.

Phil Gaffney, Commercial Director of EcoStim, a UK based company said on his part he has recognized of huge investment opportunities in Ethiopia, specially, in the agricultural sphere.

Gaffney added his company, EcoStim, manufactures and distributes natural Complex Plant Biostimulants to the agricultural market; also products to enable growers within agriculture to get better yields.

For him, Ethiopia’s investment in the agriculture sector and its workforce is found to be more attractive and profitable.

Ethiopia can provide to the world impressive investments, our specialty and our interest is in agriculture. I was also incredibly impressed with the quality of the workforce in the country, the director said.

He also appreciated the Ethiopian government for its commitment to supporting foreigners investing in Ethiopia. He also stated that Ethiopia is becoming the hub of global companies in recent times.

“If there is a global company looking on the continent, Ethiopia is at the very top of the list. (And for those where Ethiopia isn't at the very top of the list, they haven't done their research right,” he noted.

Muhamned Ciftci, the CEO and Founder of a giant Turkish based company in mining, construction and energy sectors said on his part that Ethiopia has potential in mining, energy and other investment options.

He is ready to initially invest 50 million US dollars in the energy sector in upcoming months.

“We are seeking some discussion with the government and I hope we will get results which enable us to bring much more Turkish investments in Ethiopia……. I found this country a very nice place. We are working in mining, tourism, medicine and construction. We have a factory for oil filters. We are planning to open our investment here. After a discussion we will immediately engage in the investment.”

Source: Ethiopian News Agency