The Korean government via its Korean Trade-Investment Promotion Agency (KOTRA) is considering a partnership with the Ethiopian Textile Industry Development Institute (TIDI).
The institute, formed under the Ministry of Trade, had been in agreement with the Indian government to receive support to help develop textiles in Ethiopia. However, now it wants to collaborate with KOTRA so they can share their knowledge and help train a skilled workforce.
The government expects to gross one billion dollars from textile exports by 2015, the end of Growth and Transformation Plan(GTP). To meet the target, the government has implemented programs to encourage private investment and the TIDI.
TIDI expects that by the end of the current fiscal year, on July 8, 2012, eight new and expansion projects will be completed and operational with a total outlay cost of more than 4.4 billion birr.
Five of the projects are new and are being constructed at a total cost of more than 3.4 billion birr with expected employment opportunities for 3,000 people, while the other three expansion projects under construction total over one billion birr with an estimated employment potential of 1,800 people respectively.
KOTRA contributes to the development of the Korean economy through various trade promotion activities, such as trade information, market research services and business matchmaking.
The institute will play a crucial role in helping the sector boom by producing a trained workforce; so it wants to work with countries that have a thriving textile industry.
Fikadu Ethiopia, Public Relation Head of TIDI, told Capital that after the initial discussion between the Institute and India failed, TIDI began seeking partnerships with other countries of which KOTRA is one.
“It is too early to discuss details of the partnership between the two parties,” he said. According to sources at the Institute, they are expecting support from the Korean non-profit governmental organization in terms of training for professionals.
Sources said that the Korean office is also interested in supporting the garment industrial zone located at Bole Lemi.
According to the government’s GTP, about 48 textile and garment companies will join the sector, which includes new industries, in addition to the expansion of existing factories.
Fikadu also stated said that currently about 20 projects including expanding and creating new factories are in progress. Four other huge textile companies have also joined the market.