The Ethiopian Ministry of Finance announced that six sugar projects will be privatized in the first quarter of 2020.
Eyob Tekalign, State Minister of Finance, said Ethiopia is conducting a technical assessment of validation of factories, along with social impact assessment for all the thirteen sugar projects, of which six are the ones to be privatized. The assessments on the projects are expected to be completed by the end of next month, he added.
Mr. Eyob noted, "useful information" has been gathered from potential buyers for the first phase of privatization to begin.
“We will announce open, transparent and competitive bid process for these sugar projects as the government has encouraged the participation of the private sector and inflow of private capital into the economy,” the state minister elaborated. He went on to remark that the effort to expand sugar factories brought no result, save for accumulation of debt burden, despite the huge investment made by the government. The privatization, he said, will help Ethiopia make use of its potential for sugar production. The transfer of means of production “will increase [the] produce of factories to meet growing local demands as well as export sugar to regional and international markets.”
Weyo Roba, CEO of Sugar Corporation, for his part, said a well-designed policy and regulatory framework has been put in place to protect the domestic industry from distorted international prices. The regulation will create different price regimes between domestic and export markets and ensure equitable export obligations among producers, he related.