Inaugurating the e-WTP with Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, Chinese e-commerce tycoon Jack Ma says the trading platform will ensure "Africa can compete with Europe and America."
Ethiopia and the Alibaba Group inaugurated a global trade platform on Monday.
Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed and Chinese e-commerce tycoon Jack Ma inaugurated the e-WTP.
The billionaire entrepreneur arrived in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa earlier on Monday on a business visit.
#Ethiopia #IPDC— Lelise Neme (@Lelise_Neme) November 25, 2019
Our PM Abiy Ahemd & Jack Ma Founder of Jack Ma Foundation and Partner of @AlibabaGroup visited #ICT_PARK!
Our Event was successful Special thanks to @DrGetahun , #IPDC_Team🙏🏿 @FlawlessinET @msaid_m @PreciseConsult #Contractors pic.twitter.com/g4dxuN4ePL
Speaking at the e-WTP launch, Jack Ma said: “This is the beginning, that Africa can compete with Europe and America.”
“In the past, we believed in big; for the future, we believe in small; small is beautiful,” he said, noting that e-trading platforms motivate small and medium scale enterprises.
“In the past, the world was divided into developed and developing nations; in the future, this will change to whether you are e-country or not e-country,” he added.
He also pledged $100 million to support entrepreneurship in Ethiopia.
Abiy Ahmed said Ethiopia is transforming itself into a digital economy.
I am quite pleased to welcome Jack Ma, Founder of Jack Ma Foundation and Partner of @AlibabaGroup , to Ethiopia. His visit follows our meeting at Alibaba HQ in Hangzhou earlier this year. pic.twitter.com/VNHRVdWHya— Abiy Ahmed Ali (@AbiyAhmedAli) November 25, 2019
Two other memoranda of understanding (MOU) were signed on Monday for capacity building and a comprehensive digital hub.
Ethiopia’s Minister of Innovation Getachew Mekuria recalled that the e-WTP was Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba’s offshoot born in 2016 to benefit small and micro enterprises and disadvantaged groups such as women.
The new platform will facilitate the flow of goods across boundaries, e-commerce, retail and wholesale trading in addition to helping Ethiopian youths acquire training in digital skills.