The growth of the Ethiopian textile industry


Ethiopia is one of Africa’s biggest apparel and footwear manufacturers, supplying international brands the likes of Primark, Levi’s Strauss, Tesco, and Asos with cheap, streamlined manufacturing and domestically sourced cotton.

According to the Ethiopian Investment Commission, the key reasons to invest in Ethiopia are:

  • Abundant available workforce at very competitive costs: wages in Ethiopia are a fifth of China’s and half of Vietnam’s.
  • Quality and productivity: Ethiopian workers produce as many polo shirts of the same quality per day as workers in Vietnam when using similar technology.
  • A privileged geographic location: Ethiopia is located at the center of the world with easy access to international value chains, and has access to a state-of-the-art container port (Djibouti).
  • Potential to develop a competitive cotton or textiles industry due to good climatic and soil conditions together with cheap hydro-energy (textile factories pay between US$0.78 and US$0.002 per KW).
  • Duty-free access to the European Union (EU) and…

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