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Gabon ’greedy’ for investments from India: Minister Madiya

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Republic world-7 April 2022

Gabon ’greedy’ For Investments From India: Minister Madiya by Press Trust Of India

Libreville (Gabon), Apr 7 (PTI) Resource-rich Gabon is "greedy" for investments from India and is expected to sign a bilateral trade and investment treaty later this year with India to further improve the bilateral economic ties, Foreign Investment Minister Hugues Mbadinga Madiya has said.

Located on the west coast of Africa, Gabon is fast emerging as an investment destination for industries in sectors such as fisheries, wood, health, mining, infrastructure projects and tourism.

"Gabon is greedy to attract more Indian companies. We also want to develop our tourism sector and encourage more Indians to visit our country and in turn, we also want Gabonese to visit India and further enhance the bond between the two countries," Madiya, who is the Minister for the Promotion of Investments, Public-Private Partnerships and in-charge of Improving the Business Environment, told PTI in an interview.

"Our aim is to quickly have new projects, new investors because we want to re-launch our economy after the crisis,” Madiya said, referring to the Covid-19 pandemic that wreaked havoc on the global economy during the last two years.

Gabon also appears to be inspired by the ‘Make in India’ initiative and plans to host exclusive showrooms displaying ‘Make in Gabon’ products in countries such as India, the UAE and the US.

Madiya said that India was Gabon’s third largest trade partner with the trade volume going from USD 52.77 billion in 2016 to USD 111 billion in 2019.

The trade between the two countries has increased since the establishment of the Special Economic Zone in 2019.

"There is a boom of investments from India here. Now there are a lot of Indian or Indian origin companies. We are also trying to enhance and promote our country in the international market as 88 per cent of our land is covered and protected with tropical rainforest,” he said.

The minister said that Gabon has been able to attract Indian investors in recent years as there is willingness to embrace Indians who are known for their skills, technology and leading industrial development.

"We have decided to move forward with a bilateral trade and investment treaty with India. Both Gabon and India are putting their efforts together to have this treaty signed by the end of this year," Madiya said.

The Gabon National Investment Promotion Agency and Invest India signed a Memorandum of Understanding to promote trade, investments and economic cooperation.

Madiya said Gabon was a resource-rich country which makes it an attractive investment destination, especially in high priority sectors such as wood, agriculture, transformation and energy.

Asked about the incentives offered to businesses, the minister said the Special Economic Zone in Nkok allows investors to develop businesses in diverse industries and offers tax exemption for three years in certain sectors.

He said the Nkok SEZ is home to more than 40 Indian companies, mostly in the wood sector. PTI AMP ZH AKJ ZH ZH