Following the recent normalization of Ethio-Eritrean bilateral relations, Business to Business meetings took place in Asmara. On the occasion, both countries have vehemently pledged to toil much and compensate the lost times as well as opportunities due to the 16 year-long no war, no peace policy.
Hence, what are the trade prospects and opportunities between these two countries?
Ethio-Eritrea economic partnership, among other things, focus on using ports and investing in hotel tourism.For instance ,during their stay in Eritrea, Ethiopian Business Delegation learnt that passing through import and export commodities via the nearest Eritrean ports of Assab and Massawa is advantageous in all economic aspects.
They as well noted that Ethiopian investors who have rich experiences in developing hotel infrastructure will benefit from the untapped tourism potentials on the most clean shores of Massawa..
Moreover, they exchanged views with their Eritrean counterparts on how both could utilize opportunities in agriculture, manufacturing and mining sectors in Ethiopia.
The Ethiopian Chamber of Commerce and Sectoral Associations (ECCSA) partook in the businesses visit with a view to looking into the possible opportunities and having extensive discussion on various issues with Eritrean counterparts, says Debebe Abebe, ECCSA Communication Director of Public Relations and Corporate . "The consolidation of Ethio- Eritrea bilateral relations has paved the way to utilize business opportunities shortly."
As to him, the reopening of Eritrean ports to Ethiopia would enhance trade between the two sisterly countries.
"If ECCSA finalizes the legal matters sooner than later ,Ethiopian private owners will engage in various commercial operations in Asmara "
He, furthermore, says so long as ECCSA makes successful deal with its Eritrean counterpart in terms of working in joint venture. "In a bid to discover business opportunities and acquaint both countries' investors to each other, various workshops will soon be organized here and in Asmara".
The ECCSA will facilitate business networking with a view to attracting Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) to both countries on the top working together with Eritrean counterpart in capacity building activities, he indicates.
" We will also advice importers and exporters on how to improve the accessibility of market in both countries."
For Debebe, the cooperation in trade will help the two nations to enhance mutual development particularly in expanding port opportunities and increasing Ethiopian and Eritrean business persons in worldwide trade .
As to him, exploiting the golden businesses opportunities and prospects in both countries is a wise step for the investors residing in Ethiopia ,Eritrea and overseas.
In a related story, the Ethiopian Maritime Academy has been working in the area to facilitate preconditions to resume the functionality of Massawa and Asseb ports following the consent of the Eritrean government. Ethiopian Shipping and Logistics Services Enterprise is also playing important role to move freight from Massawa port to Ethiopia and the world. Enterprise CEO Roba Megersa told reporters on last Wednesday. "The Massawa port would widen Ethiopia's port option and it is ready for service under its current state".
As to him, preparations are under completion to ship Eritrean export products from Massawa port to China. The reopening of the port would enhance trade between the two nations. It would help Ethiopia to move export products from the northern parts of the country to the world shortly.
The resumption of the water transport is therefore would aspire Ethiopian importers and exporters to engage more in business than any other times.
This would create more jobs and improve county's trading capacity which helps in response to finalize various development projects that were delayed for sluggish and distant transportation, it was learnt. BY YOHANES JEMANEH