January 6, 2013 — Eritrea intends to privatize nearly 250 businesses as share companies and launch 32 manufacturing projects in the immediate future, according to state officials and participants of the Second National Investment Conference.
Among the state-owned businesses up for privatization on the basis of 'shares and sole proprietorship' include a number of hotels, manufacturing, agriculture, pharmaceutical, telecommunication, insurance, food and beverage companies.
The government says it sees privatization as a means to stimulate job growth and to boost the economy, which is forecasted to grow by 8.5 percent this fiscal year, according to the London-based Economist Intelligent Unit.
With the passing of Proclamation No. 171/2012 into law earlier in 2012, the government seeks to encourage and develop private entrepreneurship by giving potential shareholders favorable investment opportunities.
These opportunities have already resulted in new private businesses opening up such as the TesWel Private Limited Company. Headed by Yergalem Tesfai Weldedawit, the objective of this company is to establish restaurants, hotels, pensions, real estate and retail stores in Eritrea.
Additionally, Eritrea has adopted new policy changes that includes ending restrictions on repatriation of foreign currency; having the ability to import and export freely and no longer needing to declare carried foreign currency on arrival if not in excess of $10,000.
To read the full list of policy changes, visit Sam B's report
A list of confirmed state-owned companies going private:
- Asmara Brewery
- Red Sea Bottlers Share Company
- Asmara Milk Factory
- Alfa Food Factory
- Dekemhare Pasta Factory
- Children’s Food Factory in Dekemhare
- Red Sea Food Products
- Red Sea General Mills
- Eritrean Telecommunications Corporation
- National Insurance Corporation of Eritrea
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