The 2nd Ethio-Brazil Trade and Investment Forum was held on Thursday last week (March 28) at the World Trade Centre, Sao Paulo. The Forum, organized by WAFA Marketing and Promotion PLC and the São Paulo World Trade Centre, brought together nearly a hundred private sector business representatives, 80 from Brazil, as well as dozens of other interested participants.
Opening the Forum, Ambassador Yalew Abate, Ethiopia’s Ambassador to Brazil noted that despite more than half a century of diplomatic relations there had been no strong growth in trade and investment between the two countries. He said bilateral relations had to be translated into meaningful economic ties between their business communities. He strongly advised members of the private sectors of each country to spearhead activities to boost trade and stressed the readiness of the Embassy to support potential investors in Ethiopia.
Mr Zemedeneh Negatu, the Global Chairman of the Fairfax Africa Fund and the former Managing Partner for Ernst and Young (E&Y) in Ethiopia and Head of the Transaction Advisory Services for Eastern Africa, also detailed reasons for Brazilian investors to invest in Ethiopia. He encouraged Brazilian entrepreneurs to establish joint ventures with their Ethiopian counterparts. Others who shared their experiences of establishing businesses in Ethiopia were Ms Natalia Melo, CEO of Standard Bank, the largest private bank in Africa, and Mr Lucas, CEO of CBA Sementes, a company working to empower potato producers by increasing profitability; it is now in the final stages of preparation to invest in Ethiopia.
Following presentations, the Forum concluded with a series of Business to Business discussions between Ethiopian and Brazilian participants.Distributed by APO Group on behalf of Embassy of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, London, UK.