Chinese built industrial park near Addis Ababa opens

The Ethiopian Prime Minister inaugurated the park, which is expected to attract companies involved in the textile, apparel and machinery production sectors

On 7 October Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed inaugurated the Chinese-built Adama Industrial Park located 74 kilometres southeast of Ethiopia's capital, Addis Ababa.

The US$146 million industrial park, which was built by China Civil Engineering Construction Company, forms part of the Ethiopian government's industrialisation plan. It has integrated facilities including clinics, fire services, a market centre and exhibition facilities.

"The inauguration of the Adama Industrial Park is crucial to meeting the industrialisation needs of Ethiopia and fulfilling the employment and human resources development of our higher education graduates," Ahmed said at the inauguration ceremony.

Ahmed said that with his administration's political reforms undertaken since April almost complete, the focus from now on would be to meet the economic needs of the country's estimated 105 million citizens.

Ahmed pointed to the advantages of the strategic location of Adama, which is close to the Chinese-built 756 kilometre Ethiopia-Djibouti electrified rail line, and the 99 kilometre Addis-Adama toll expressway.

Chinese Ambassador to Ethiopia, Tan Jian, said at the inauguration that the focus on building industrial parks would help the transition from a primary agricultural products and raw materials exporter to an industrialised economy.

The commissioning of Adama Industrial Park would be a welcome addition to boost the Belt and Road Initiative, Tan added.

The park is expected to attract companies involved in the textile, apparel and machinery production sectors, and has already signed up companies from China and South Korea.

Ethiopia has so far commissioned five industrial parks, and plans to commission six others during the current fiscal year.