The fertilizer plant, to be set in Dire Dawa Industrial Park, is expected to create over 1,200 job opportunities during its construction phase.

By Pawlos Belete W. |

Ethiopia and Morocco have unveiled their plan to develop the second largest integrated phosphate fertilizer factory in the world at a cost of 2.5 billion USD in its first phase of development while the second phase is projected to consume over 1.8 billion USD.

The planned investment will be developed in a joint venture scheme between the Ethiopian government and OCP; an investment arm of the Moroccan government. The plant will be erected at Dire Dawa Industrial Park.

The two countries have agreed to contribute 40 percent equity while 60 percent of the investment is expected to come from different international financing sources according to information obtained from Ethiopian Ministry of Finance and Economic Cooperation.

The planned investment is expected to create over 1,200 job opportunities during its construction phase. It will create 500 plus permanent jobs when it goes operational by 2022.

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The establishment of the plant is expected to boost Ethiopia’s agricultural productivity by at least 40 percent since the planed plant will produce customized fertilizer that fits the needs of Ethiopian soil type. That will be enhanced by Agricultural Transformation Agency’s soil fertility mapping of the country which is expected to be completed by next year.

The establishment of the plant in Ethiopia expected to reduce Ethiopia’s dependence on imported fertilizer apart from easing the hard currency burden the country has been facing due competing needs for it.

Ethiopia’s fertilizer import bill is expected to reach 1.5 billion dollar by 2022 when the plant becomes operational. By then, the new plant will provide 80 percent of the country’s fertilizer needs while that figure is planned to reach 100 percent by 2025, said the CEO and Charmin of OCP, Mostafa Terrah, while briefing  delegates today at the Ethiopian National Place.

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