Engaged in major construction projects in Africa and Ethiopia, ranging from the development of industrial parks to the construction of airport facilities, China Civil Engineering and Construction Company (CCECC) has announced plans to engage in the real-estate sector in Ethiopia as well as other African countries to avert risks related to giant projects it is implementing in the continent.
CCECC, widely known as Juntu in China, is a major player in Ethiopia’s industrial parks development having entered the market five years ago. It has since built the Hawassa, Kombolcha, Adama, Dire Dawa Industrial Park, and parts of Addis Ababa Djibouti Railway.
“Besides Railway and Industrial Parks, we plan to expand our engagement in Ethiopia to water supply and road projects,” Zheng Jun, CCECC’s Chief International Business Head told The Reporter.
Reminding that they have employed more than 25,000 employees for the Addis – Djibouti railway project, Jun said that they are committed to recruiting more local staff and transfer skills.
“We always organize a training journey to our staff and our success as well as safe operation of projects after completion depends on our cooperation with locals,” he said adding that, “we value localization of management in foreign projects.”
“For the projects in Africa, it has not been smooth all in all. There are always challenges and risks in implementing projects like Addis-Djibouti railway,” he added. Although the cooperation they have with the government and locals has brought the project into completion, CCECC plans to engage in different projects to avert business risk in the continent.
Projects like this have been implemented in Ethiopia through vendor financing arrangements in which the project implementing contractor will secure the loan from its source country and implement the project for the government.
For instance, the Addis Ababa Djibouti Railway was constructed for USD four billion secured from the Chinese Exim Bank which CCECC implemented in a turn-key project contract. The operation and management of the railway has been contracted to CCECC itself in which it has hired more than 2,500 staff among which 1,500 are locals.
Although the corporation did not mention when exactly it will venture into real estate and how much capital it will put in place; the main aim of the new project is to avert the risks that the company faces through the implementation of different projects in countries like Ethiopia.
With more engagement of Chinese in Ethiopia, local people are learning a working culture, a culture that descended from the reform eras forty years ago, Jun says.
“The Chinese reform was successful because of the people’s diligence and quality works unless which the efforts would be in vain,” he added.
CCECC has different offices in Africa including those in Ethiopia, Nigeria Uganda, Rwanda, Djibouti, Kenya and Burundi.