By Daniela Polizzi
From renewable energy operators, to construction companies, plant engineering and marble up to tourism, breeding, agriculture and leather processing industries. In all, there are 80 entrepreneurs of small and medium Italian companies that, in coincidence with the visit to Eritrea by Deputy Foreign Minister Emanuela Del Re, met in Asmara the President Isayas Afewerki and the Head of Political Affairs Yemane Ghebreab. A five-day cycle of meetings that also included the ministers of the individual economic sectors. The initiative is the new phase of relaunching Eritrea which signed the peace agreements with Ethiopia in July. Three months later the UN unanimous decision to withdraw sanctions from the country of the Horn of Africa also came, and also became part of the Human Rights Council.
Now Italian investors try to rediscover the former Italian colony. It is a first step, still exploratory, which should follow, in March, the visit to Asmara by the Foreign Minister Enzo Moavero, supported by a delegation from SACE, a key partner to guarantee future flows of investments directed by Italian companies. The decision to open a channel was also taken by entrepreneurs in the wake of the October meeting in the Eritrean capital between the prime minister Giuseppe Conte, the first of a European premier, and the Eritrean president Afewerki. And shortly before, the intervention of Romano Prodi in support of the reconciliation process between Eritrea and Ethiopia and the role that Europe and Italy can play.
The belief is that Italy can contribute to the reconstruction of the local economy, a phase of relaunch that goes through investments and growth, essential for giving jobs and the future to young people. In fact, a memorandum of understanding was signed between the International Training Center of La Sapienza University in Rome and the University of Asmara for the birth of an engineering center in the Horn of Africa. In the delegation, the mechanical enterprise Guido Rota, specialized in plants for animal husbandry, biogas and biomethane, Tuscany Italprogetti (plant for tanneries), the Henraux of Lucca, active in the extraction and processing of marble, one of the resources of ‘Eritrea, then the horse breeding company for competitions, Sistemaeventi. Then the companies in the food sector: Grifo Latte who laid the foundations for a joint venture in the production of fresh food and the Goretti winery. At their side also exponents of Intesa Sanpaolo that could evaluate the investment support of Italian companies.