Ethiopia seeks more Indian investments

February 3rd, 2011 - 8:46 pm ICT by IANS  

Pranab Mukherjee New Delhi, Feb 3 (IANS) Ethiopia would like to see more investments from Indian firms and is also interested in signing the double taxation avoidance agreement with India, the African nation’s Finance Minister Sufian Ahmed said Thursday.The Ethiopian minister of finance and economic development expressed his desire to see more Indian firms setting shop in the African nation during a meeting with Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee.

Mukherjee told the visiting minister that India would “extend all possible help to Ethiopia in its economic development”.

“In this regard, he (Mukherjee) mentioned about line of credit extended by Exim Bank to Ethiopia,” the finance ministry said in a statement.

Indian investors have so far committed about $4.7 billion investment in Ethiopia, most of it being related to the farm sector.

Trade between the two countries is over $500 million. Most of it comprises Indian exports.

The African country, which is located at the horn of the continent, has also offered 1.8 million hectares of its farmland to Indian investors - that equals nearly 40 percent of the total area of the principal grain-growing state of Punjab.

The Ethiopian minister “also showed interest in signing of the double taxation avoidance agreement (DTAA) between India and Ethiopia”, according to the statement.

The DTAA will provide for mutual exchange of information, especially the sharing of banking data, while avoiding taxing the same entity twice.

The minister’s visit comes ahead of the second India-Africa forum summit, which will be hosted by Ethiopia, seat of the 53-nation African Union, at its capital Addis Ababa.

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