Addis Ababa, Ethiopia (Xinhua)―A two-day forum on Investing in Africa has wrapped up in Ethiopia’s capital Addis Ababa after successful deliberations on ways of ensuring accelerated investments and industrialization on the continent.

The forum, which is the first edition, was jointly organized by governments of China and Ethiopia as well as the World Bank Group (WBG), China Development Bank (CDB), the China-Africa Development Fund (CAD-Fund), and the UN Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO).

In the conclusion of the forum, Ahmed Shide, Ethiopia’s State Minister of Finance and Economic Development, said the forum promoted dialogue between stakeholders, policy makers, development partners, foreign and local investors on how investment could be encouraged and industrialization be accelerated in Africa.

The State Minister, particularly told reporters that the discussions have taken place at the forum focusing on promoting accelerated and responsible investments and investment partnerships in African countries both from China and other parts of the world as well as within Africa.

“Specifically, the forum provided the opportunity for the participants to learn how to make special economic zones, and industrial parks work, address infrastructure and trade logistics including regional integration, create the conditions to accelerate development-oriented private sector investment, develop skills required for competitive and job creation and improve agricultural productivity and agri-business opportunities,” said Ahmed.

Important points were raised about the conditions that Africans need to put in place in order to attract more investments to the continent including the importance of creating a conducive business climate addressing bottlenecks in trade logistics, according to the official.

He further said that the forum discussed possible way of strengthening existing partnership and potential collaboration between China, African countries, other development partners and the private sector.

Reiterating that the forum was successful cooperation among the organizers, Shi Jiyang, President of CAD Fund, said the China Development Bank (CDB) would continue to encourage its clients to strengthen investments in Africa and also its cooperation with WB, UNIDO, and African governments to promote industrialization on the African continent.

Philippe Scholtes, Managing Director of Program Development and Technical Cooperation at UNIDO, said the forum has focused on industrialization, which his organization works on by providing technical support.

He also revealed that CDB and UNIDO have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to strengthen cooperation between them based on some areas of common interest in Asia and Africa focusing on areas such as industrial parks and agri-businesses.

“We see this event (the forum) a very significant milestone in the strengthening of our cooperation; and we look forward in implementing the ideas to work,” he said.

Stating that the World Bank focused on development, Chen Guangzhe, WB Country Director in Ethiopia, noted that the forum has helped bring international experiences on development and addressing poverty.

He said WB would continue to cooperate on such initiative towards ensuring development and addressing poverty.

The next Investing in Africa Forum will be conducted in September 2016 in Guangdong Province of China.

Source: Coastweek
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