ETHIOPIA – A new Ethio-Italian company is to join the print and packaging industry in Ethiopia. The company is owned by the Italian NewBox S.P.A and Ethiopian investor Alemayehu Negussie.

The company, named Newaman Metal Packaging Manufacturing Plc was showcasing its sample products to potential customers at the Fifth Afri Print and Packaging Expo between December 11 and 13, 2014.

Afri Print and Packaging Expo is an international trade fair for services, equipment and technologies for printing and packaging that is held in Ethiopia every year.

Newaman Metal Packaging Manufacturing Plc was established with a capital of 73 million Br. Alemayehu owns 55pc of the company while the rest of the shares go to NewBox.

The company has been building its factory for the past year on a 6000sqm plot of land leased in Alem Gena town, 24Km from Addis Abeba, says the general manager.

The company will go through the commissioning process by March and start manufacturing in June or July, 2015, said the manager, who declined to be named. It will start with crown caps manufacturing and printing, according to Ottaviano Lucatello, NewBox S.A.P president.

The company will have the capacity of manufacturing one billion crown caps a year, stated Ottaviano. After two years it will commence production of ornamented and regular cans, he added. The principal raw materials required for the production is sheet metal, which will be imported from abroad, according to the manager.

The local demand for crown cork is met through both local production and import. Ethiopian Crown Cork and Can Manufacturing S.C., CGF-Crown Cork and Aluminum Cap Manufacturing Factory, Daylight Applied Technologies Pvt. Ltd Co. and Metal Crown are the four local factories in Ethiopia.

Based on the existing production trend, it is estimated that 1.3 billion pieces of crown caps has been produced locally in 2013, showing 12.6pc production growth compared to the 2012 fiscal year, according to Central Statistics Agency (CSA).

At present, the major source of supply to the local market for crown cork is mainly import. During the period between 2011 and 2013, on average, about 93.24% of the total imports of crown corks were supplied by five countries, namely, India (42.39%), Spain (14.34%), Egypt (14.2%), Italy (12.97%) and France (9.35%), according to Ethiopian Revenue & Custom Authority (ERCA).

Other countries supply the remaining.

There is a disproportional supply of crown corks when compared to the high demand, stated Fitsum Getu, One Cent Management & Marketing S.C. (OCM), chief investment and research director.

The demand for crown cork depends mainly on the performance of its end-users such as beverage, mineral water and cosmetics industry, explains Fitsum.

The current demand for the crown caps in Ethiopia from these industries, which is 3.3 billion pieces, is expected to grow to 5.5 billion pieces in 2015, according to a research by OCM, May, 2014. OCM is an Ethiopian private equity and assessment management share company established on December 3 2010. Newaman engagement will have greater significant to meet the increased demand, stated Ottaviano.

The fifth Afri Print and Packaging Expo was organised by Prana Promotion, Expo team and the Ethiopian Publishers and Printers Association. Prana promotion was established in 2008 with a mission to promote and fill the gap in potential sectors and industries in Africa.

This exhibition is held in order to promote the print and packaging industry as well as to identify and fill gaps in the industry, said Nebyou Lemma, Prana Promotion’s managing director. Around 41 companies from all over the world had participated in the exhibition.

This is a great way to keep ourselves up-to-date with the latest technology and share experiences, stated Mekdes Nega, a visitor from Akoatet Printing Plc. Though there is a great potential for the industry, it is characterised by a lack of educated human resource in the sector, according to Mekdes.

Next year the exhibition will be held in Addis Abeba in a much bigger arena, stated Nebyou.

January 4, 2015;