Ivory Coast turned out to be a place of opportunities for several Italian companies. As reported in a press release published on the website of the Ivorian Embassy in Rome, on January 15-24 representatives of ten Italian companies located in the Triveneto area traveled to the country, as part of a wider effort to revive economic cooperation between the two countries.
The mission, commissioned by the recently appointed Ivorian Ambassador Samuel Ouattara, was organized by the honorary consul of Ivory Coast to the north-eastern regions of Italy, Claudio Giust, an entrepreneur based in Treviso. The representatives of the companies participating to the journey, escorted by the Ambassador, signed contracts and cooperation agreements, many of which characterized by a strong social impact and the employment of local workers.
Amatec S.p.A., a company specialized in the design and construction of fuel management systems, will build fuel storage facilities in some of the airports in Ivory Coast. Besides, Amatec was awarded a contract for the construction of a plant for the processing of cashew in Dabakala, located in the north of the country. The plant will have a processing capacity of 15000 tonnes of cashew a year and is expected to employ 400 full-time workers.
The project has important social and economic implications: through it, Ivory Coast, the world’s largest producer of cashew, aims at reducing the power of multinational companies in the sector, bringing at least part of the processing chain back to the country and granting access to a fair market to local farmers. Recently, Ambassador Ouattara went to Ivory Coast to oversee the start of the construction work, that is expected to last approximately one year and will be carried out by local workers under the supervision of Italian technicians.
Innotek, a company that operates in the field of goldsmith industry, will take part in the modernization of the Coopeda gold mine in Bassawa. The company also expressed interest in taking over the management of four gold mines located in Gboli.
Finally, construction firm Rete Ecodistrict agreed to cooperate with Ivorian company Netrafad in building a food market in Bingerville. Rete Ecodistrict, together with La Edilegno, a firm specialized in eco-friendly buildings, is also involved in talks regarding the construction of a 15000 seats City Stadium in Grand Bassam and a new market in Mockeyville.
Ivory Coast is characterized by a fast-growing economy, with an annual GDP growth rate of 6%. Italy is present in the country especially in the woodworking, maritime transport, agri-food, infrastructure, and tourism sectors. The country is rich in raw materials and is an important producer of sugar, cocoa, and coffee, but its processing industry is almost nonexistent, making it an interesting destination for Italian companies.