– Worku Lemi has witnessed great changes in his life and in his hometown since the installation of a Chinese textile factory.
Miles away from the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa, Sebeta in the Oromia region used to be largely an agricultural city. But the establishment of Zhejiang Mina Textile Co., Ltd. has helped bring a welcome change to the small Ethiopian town and to the lives of local residents.
“I was one of the first batch employees of this company when it started about seven years ago. Since then, I have been working here and have been constantly improving both in my professional and living conditions,” said the 31-year-old. Lemi said in a recent interview.
The print and dye factory, equipped with international brand machinery, is now capable of producing 200,000 meters of printed and dyed fabrics per day, and its products are traded in neighboring European, local and African markets.
Lemi, an accounting graduate, had worked for years at a local factory before finally giving up working there “due to the difficult conditions and lack of room for personal improvement.”
After joining Zhejiang Mina Textile Co., Ltd.’s Arbaminch textile factory, the enthusiastic young man was able to rise from what he described as a low-ranking factory position initially to a supervisor now.
“Before becoming a supervisor and supervising other Ethiopian employees, I was an assistant to a Chinese machine operator. I learned a lot from him,” Lemi said. He attributed his growth to the fluid exchange of experiences practiced between Chinese and Ethiopian professionals.
“There are around 300 people working here. I really appreciate the Chinese investors for creating this amazing opportunity for us,” he added.
Abdurhaman Kemal, the company’s local marketing director, praised the factory’s state-of-the-art machinery and innovative working procedures, which have brought a far-reaching and revolutionary role to the Ethiopian textile industry sector.
Noting the growing number of young Ethiopians graduating from different universities, as well as technical and vocational education and training centers in the sector, Kemal highlighted the importance of the factory in terms of creating employment opportunities while offering technical studies with the help of its modern laboratories.
“In addition to massive knowledge transfer efforts, Chinese technical experts are also sharing their hard-working culture with our local workers,” he said. ■
A local employee works at a printing and dyeing factory of Zhejiang Mina Textile Co., Ltd. in Sebeta, Ethiopia, on November 16, 2022. Kilometers away from the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa, Sebeta, in the region of Oromia used to be largely an agricultural town. The establishment of Zhejiang Mina Textile Co., Ltd. has helped bring a welcome change to the small town and the lives of local residents. (/Michael Tewelde)
Abdurhaman Kemal, head of local marketing at Zhejiang Mina Textile Co., Ltd.’s Arbaminch textile factory, speaks during an interview in Sebeta, Ethiopia on November 16, 2022. Miles away from the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa, Sebeta in the Oromia region used to be largely an agricultural city. The establishment of Zhejiang Mina Textile Co., Ltd. has helped bring a welcome change to the small town and the lives of local residents. (/Michael Tewelde)