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Unilever Plans Ethiopia Manufacturing Plant

March 10, 2014

Unilever_brandsBloomberg – Unilever (UNA), the world’s second-biggest consumer-products maker, plans to open a manufacturing plant in Ethiopia during the next year in a bid to emulate its expansion into Vietnam, a company official said.

The London- and Rotterdam-based company is renting premises for a plant in the Chinese-built Eastern Industry Zone in Dukem, 31 kilometers (19 miles) southeast of the capital, Addis Ababa, Dougie Brew, head of corporate affairs in Africa, said in a phone interview on March 4. Unilever, which already imports Knorr stock cubes and Omo detergent into Ethiopia, may initially make fabric-cleaning soaps before moving into food, he said from London.

“The plans are ambitious for Ethiopia because we see it as a growing market,” Brew said. “We’ve taken a long-term investment decision in Ethiopia because of the demography, broad-based growth and opportunity to create a genuinely inclusive and sustainable business model from scratch.”

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