The land is allocated for the manufacturing sector
Debre Berhan, the capital of North Shoa Zone and the country’s latest investment destination, availed 500 hectares of land for the Diaspora, The Reporter has learnt.
The City’s Industry and Investment Office said it is working hard to make Debre Berhan an industry hub and a popular city both in the region and nationwide. Taking this into consideration, it was said that preparations have started to welcome Ethiopian Diaspora.
Berhan Gebrehiwot, Debre Berhan City Administration Industry and Investment Office Head, told The Reporter, that the North Shoa capital is a city of small and large industries, attracting both local and foreign investors, and that, special attention has been given to the Diaspora community, which are coming back home upon the Prime Minister’s call.
The office said that the Diaspora who wants to come into Debre Berhan for development and investment can engage in any sector, and preparations are underway to engage them in the manufacturing, service, especially hotels, tourism and real estate sector.
According to Berhan, in terms of manufacturing, more than 500 hectares of land has been arranged in four clusters. These are agro-processing, wood and metal, textile and garment and chemical and construction sectors.
For Berhan, there is a lot of work that needs to be done in relation to the service sector in Debre Berhan, especially in the tourism sector, where the Diaspora are urged to focus on.
A field visit will be arranged on the development sites invested by the Diaspora who have already entered previously, in order to initiate and give them insight on different investment options. It was mentioned that upto seven industries will be selected and visited by the Diasporacommunity.
Berhan also said that the city administration had prepared a promotional production exhibiting what the city looked like previously. According to Berhan, there will be also video presentations and panel discussions soon.
The video presentation displayed Debre Berhan’ appropriateness, based on its proximity to Addis Ababa, and explored the city’s potential for infrastructure, such as the construction of dry ports and highways in the future.
Berhan explained that one of the issues set for the Diaspora is the improvement in feasibility study process for projects in the manufacturing sector. Normally, there are prerequisites that need to be evaluated in order for a feasibility study to be endorsed.
There are issues related to the establishment of the factories, contributions on job creation, technology, using local resources and export activities. However, this time around, the investment office has encouraged the Diaspora to invest with the capital they have acquired without any bureaucracy.
According to Berhan, 10 Diasporas have so far applied to engage in different sectors.
The long-running war in the region has had an impact on Debre Berhan’s investment activities. However, it was said that the investors in the city have been supporting the government in various ways beyond production, Berhan told The Reporter.
Berhan described that some foreign developers have left the area to some extent and laid-off workers. However, he said that the war did not take place in Debre Berhan and the investors chose to return to work.