By Daniel Beyene
Ethiopia and Singapore expressed their readiness to further enhance cooperation in trade and industry sectors.
Opening a three-day Ethio – Singapore Business Forum yesterday, Urban Development and Housing State Minister Demisse Shito said that economic cooperation and trade between Ethiopia and Singapore has been growing steadily as the two sisterly countries have diplomatic relations dating back over a half century.
More recently, he said the two countries have signed an agreement to avoid double taxation which would enable both countries to boost trade, cooperation in technology and knowledge transfer as well as industrial development and investment.
According to Demisse, Ethiopia is the most preferable foreign direct investment destination in Africa, as it is blessed with a sustainable peace, attractive untapped market , enabling investment climate and the like.
Singaporean Ministries of Defence and Foreign Affairs State Minister Dr. Mohamed Maliki Bin Osman on his part said that through investing in hospitality industry, agro-processing, education and health care, Singaporean investors seek to penetrate into the huge fast growing market and economy of Ethiopia.
Moreover, he said Singapore has keen interest to enhance trade and investment with Ethiopia and other Sub-Sharan African countries opening a trade centre in Nairobi soon.
Talking about some of the promising investment opportunities and potentials in Ethiopia, Dr. Mohamed noted that though Ethiopia is one of landlocked countries in Africa, it is highly interconnected with the global and neighbouring countries’ economies through its huge infrastructure investment .
” The Ethiopian Airlines will soon resume direct flight to Singapore and this would help the current 24 million USD trade exchange volume between the two countries grow sharply.” he added.
At the event, Ethiopian Investment Commissioner Fitsum Arega briefed Singaporean business delegation on investment opportunities, regulations, incentives and related issues.