Ethiopia Looking Forward to Advance, Deepen Strategic Cooperation with China

Addis Ababa Ethiopia is looking forward to advancing and deepening the strategic cooperation with China as the relations between the two countries are improving tangible results in various areas, Ethiopian Ministry of Finance, Ahmed Shide said.

High level Ethiopian Delegation, led by Ahmed Shide, including the Governor of the National Bank of Ethiopia, Commissioner of the Ethiopian Investment Commission and other senior government officials has conducted a working visit to China to discuss bilateral trade, investment, and economic cooperation between the two countries.

Speaking with CGTN while in China, Ahmed Shide said China and Ethiopia enjoy comprehensive strategic cooperative partnerships. Our cooperation has been elevated to a strategic comprehensive level several years ago by the decision of our two leaders.

Ethiopia is a testimony and a model when it comes to China Africa cooperation, he said, adding since then, Ethiopia and China have been implementing significant and extensive projects together.

“‘One of the most important examples is the Addis Ababa- Djibouti railway. This railway covers long distances between Addis Ababa and Djibouti and it is making our import and export corridor competitive.’’

According to him, the Ethio-Djibouti railway is one of the early harvests of belt and road initiative. The project that has been implemented within the belt and road initiative has proven to be very beneficial, he said.

It is making our country competitive to attract investment from all over the world. Therefore, they are very beneficial and very good.

The project is a classic example of regional infrastructure development connecting Ethiopia to Djibouti, he said noting that it is one of the best examples of Africa – China cooperation, which is based on win-win mutually beneficial cooperation.

“First of all, they are creating significant assets, infrastructural assets for the country, both in transport, energy, in urban development, water supply schemes, manufacturing like sugar and industrial park development, all of them are contributing to the growth and development of Ethiopia.”

Both leaders, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed as well as President Xi Jinping have acknowledged in various meetings and global forums how important this railway line is for both Ethiopia and Djibouti, he noted.

Hence, Ethiopia is looking forward to advancing and deepening and sustaining the strategic cooperation with China, the minister told CGTN.

In this regard, President Xi Jinping’s offer of Zero tariff treatments for Ethiopia’s taxable export items and also for other African countries will undoubtedly play a significant role in enhancing trade between Africa and China and Ethiopia-China, he elaborated.

It is a very timely and proper decision from the People’s Republic of China to advance our cooperation, he said, adding that it will facilitate the export of Ethiopia to China, which is very important, Ahmed pointed out.

‘‘… This new decision is fully welcomed by our prime minister and government and the companies, both Ethiopian and international companies that are in Ethiopia will benefit from this and, as a result of this, the production capacity in Ethiopia will be enhanced.’’

The new Zero Tariff by China will support Ethiopia’s growth and development and the solidarity of the People’s Republic of China, he said, adding the new initiative comes at this period when Ethiopia faces multiple challenges including Covid-19, international price hike of commodities due to conflict in Ukraine, and also climate related problems like drought.

It is to be recalled that the government of China announced last week that China will offer zero-tariff treatment to 98 percent of the tariff line, with 8,804 items of products originating from Ethiopia as of March 1, 2023.

The move will further strengthen the economic ties between China and Ethiopia, bringing benefits to both countries, it was learned.

Source: Ethiopian News Agency