First China Expo in Africa held in Addis


With many labor intensive industries from China looking to relocate to Africa, the 2013 (Africa) China Commodities, Technology, and Services Expo at the Millennium Hall, December 5-7, was a vital networking opportunity for Ethiopian investors.
Over 150 Chinese companies came from cities like Beijing, Shanghai, Jiangsu, Guangdong, Zhejiang, Hunan,  and Shandong to showcase their products and services. Some of these companies have already invested in Ethiopia. The expo hoped to promote bilateral exchanges and cooperation between Chinese and African enterprises while at the same time providing assistance to Chinese enterprises so that they can better know and explore African markets.
There were eight professional exhibitions from China: Special Vehicle and Spare Parts, Electric Power and New Energy Technology, Textile and Leather Processing, Engineering Machinery, Engineering and Agricultural Machinery, Hardware and Construction Materials, Engineering Technology,and one featuring Chinese products.
Sisay Gemechu, State Minister of Industry (MoI), told journalists at a press briefing that he hopes the expo will allow his Ministry to showcase Ethiopia’s potential to Chinese investors and when they do discover what is here, he believes they will relocate to Ethiopia.
Gao Hucheng, Minister of Commerce of China, wrote a letter commemorating the opening of the expo saying that China is committed to working with African Nations. Hucheng said China plans to look for opportunities for win-win partnerships between African countries and China, by looking for new ways to do business that are sustainable.
He recognized that right now China is facing a challenge from the rising cost of human labor and this might lead to more Chinese companies relocating to countries like Ethiopia.
“We selected Ethiopia as the destination of this expo because we think Ethiopia is a place many Chinese industries would like to relocate to,” Hucheng said.
“Relocating is a worldwide trend,” he added.
This is the first Chinese Expo in Africa. It covered an area of 8,000sqm. Visitors were treated to samples of agricultural and engineering machines, automobiles and spare parts, hardware and construction materials,light industry consumption goods, home appliances and consumer electronics. It also showcased electric power products, rail transportation devices, petrochemicals, metallurgy and mining, construction materials, civil engineering and equipment technology.