The largest Paper Mill in Ethiopia
Yekatit Pulp and Paper, a sister company of Yekatit Paper Converting Plc, a pioneer in the Ethiopian paper industry since 1997, has planned to set up the biggest mill in the east African country with an investment budget of over 2 billion birr (over 80 million U.S. dollars).
Yekatit Pulp and Paper and China Engineering Corporation (CEC) have signed an agreement to build this pulp and paper mill in Oromia Regional State in Ethiopia.
CEC was awarded the project through an open international bidding process.
“China Engineering Corporation found to have the required technological, organizational and financial capabilities to plan and execute this massive industrial project successfully as compared to global bidders participated in the bid process”, according to Yonas Alemu, Yekatit Pulp and Paper Project Director.
CEC is expected to complete the project within two years after the first down payment.
According to Yonas, the project, which is expected to start operation by mid-2019, would create 9,000 direct and indirect job opportunities. It will produce the raw material for industrial packaging as well as for the hygiene paper, i.e. toilet paper, napkins and kitchen towels for both the local market and export.
Alemu Sime, State Minister of industry, also lauded the project, indicating that the project would help our country in substituting paper and pulp products which otherwise would be imported.
About 40% of the project investment will be financed by the owners’ equity contribution and 60% will be secured through a long-term loan from the Development Bank of Ethiopia. After the completion of the mill, Yekatit will export the final products to the African market.
It is also aimed at substituting imports of such products and could save over 356.5 million Br of foreign exchange for the nation.
Yekatit pulp and paper has also signed turnkey technology consultancy agreement with C2C Paper Projects LLC, an Indian company to undertake the supervision of the project engineering, procurement, installation and commissioning works on behalf of the project promoters and its sponsors.
Yekatit, a pioneer in the paper industry, was founded five decades ago by foreign investors and nationalized by the Dergue regime. It was privatized in 2010 and sold to one of its current owner Gobezayehu Zerihun. Two years later, it merged with Techno Partners, leading to the foundation of Yekatit Paper Converting Plc. Currently, it is owned by Gobezayehu Zerihun and Misrak Ayele.
There are two other paper manufacturing plants in the country, the Indian AnMol and Ethio Pulp and Paper Factory, which are located in the Wonjii area. A new company called Pure Wood Pulp Paper & Packing PLC is also set to open in the next 12 months, with an investment capital of one billion Birr in Dukem, 37 km away from Addis Abeba. It is owned by foreign investors from China and Ethiopia.