Located in Mojo town in the eastern Shewa Zone of Oromia regional state, 64 kilometers from Addis Ababa, the project that is already under implementation is expected to cost £144m.
“A few years back, the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) and Addis Ababa University conducted a feasibility study that would enable the government, donors and the private sector to build a well-developed leather City that can be an emblematic leather industry center for other African countries,” recalled Aurelia Patrizia, UNIDO representative and director of regional hub special representative to the African Union (AU).
Mojo’s specialised leather city project, hailed as the first of its kind in Africa, has been lagging behind schedule mainly due to issues related to compensation to farmers, the relocation process and land-related issues. However, as most of these haggles are coming to an end, the project is expected to be operational by next year.
The project is described as a territorial development project with massive infrastructure facilities including a state of the art waste treatment plan, housing, leather institutions, chemical and shoe factories, road facilities and dozens of tanneries along with the existing 14 firms operating in the city, she remarked.
“Having one of the world's largest livestock populations and the largest in Africa, Ethiopia has to exploit its resources,” said Teka Gebreyesus, Trade and Industry State Minister.
Teka, noting the country’s ten-year development plan that aims to create five million jobs in the manufacturing sector, said that the Mojo specialised leather production centre is one of the government’s key focus areas to utilise the leather industry and contribute its fair share to the national plan.
Officials briefing the media on Thursday announced that Ethiopia has been chosen to host the fifth edition of World Leather Congress, which will be held on November 1, 2021 for five consecutive days here in Addis Ababa.
The annual assembly is expected to bring about 250 international experts, manufacturers and investors from the most influential fashion and tanning industries from around 20 countries, the organisers revealed. The previous four congresses were held in Brazil, Italy, China and New York.
Similarly, Ethiopia will also host the 12th All African Leather Fair and the sixth Africa Sourcing and Fashion week from December 3-6, 2021. On this annual leather fair, over 150 international manufacturers and exporters from 20 countries are expected to display their products and innovations to over 3000 trade professionals and sourcing industries.