Ethiopia Seals 2.4 billion Dollars Fertilizer Project

OCP's phosphoric acid and phosphate fertilizer production in Jorf Lasfar. (AP Abdeljalil Bounhar)

The Ethiopian government has signed a joint development agreement with Morocco-based OCP S.A (formerly Office Chérifien des Phosphates), a state-owned phosphate rock miner, phosphoric acid manufacturer, and phosphate fertilizer producer. Among other things, the 2.4 billion agreement aims at the establishment of a jointly owned fertilizer plant in Dire Dawa, Ethiopia.

The Ethiopian authorities deployed a top-level delegation led by Finance Minister, Mr. Ahmed Shide. Included in his entourage, were officials from Ethiopia’s Chemical Industry Corporation (CIC), Agricultural Businesses Corporation (EABC), and Ethiopia’s Petroleum and Biofuel Corporation (EMPBC).

The signing ceremony held in Rabat three weeks ago, will allow the establishment of a fertilizer complex, to be supplied with Ethiopian sourced gas and Moroccan phosphoric acid.

According to agreement instruments signed t by representatives of both countries, an estimated $2.3 billion is due to be spent at the initial phase of project development. In course of this period, a 2.5 million tonnes per year urea, NPK, and NPS production unit would be installed. The next phase of capacity expansion would see a mark-up of the unit’s capacity to 3.8 million tonnes.

The agreement is a follow-up to the widely reported November 2016 mega-project deal signed in Addis Ababa, in late 2016, by a visiting King Mohammed VI of Morocco and Mr. Hailemariam Desalegn Boshe, ex Ethiopian Prime Minister.

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