The major Korean electrical and electronics brands have a strong foothold in Africa – for example, Samsung has 35% of the smartphone market and LG has already invested in a local assembly plant in Sudan for washing machines.
Samsung is the leading investor in the manufacturing and assembly of electronic machinery goods in Ethiopia and Sudan.
The Horn is a net importer of electronic machinery. Imports and exports are highest in Ethiopia and lowest in South Sudan.
Ethiopia and Sudan have electronics assembly factories that service the East African market. In Sudan, Haggar Holdings Company assembles and distributes Samsung consumer electronics products. Techno Mobile and G-Tide manufacture handsets for the Ethiopian and East African markets. Samsung has announced plans to open a laptop and printer manufacturing plant in Ethiopia.
Ethiopia and Sudan intend to diversify their economies and enhance their manufacturing capabilities. Ethiopia offers incentives for export-oriented industries while Sudan intends to develop their productive value chains.
Potential entry strategy for new investors:
Samsung has previously announced plans to invest in the region, which may support other opportunities in the manufacturing value chain.
Djibouti is positioning itself as a regional transport hub and could benefit from Ethiopia’s manufacturing sector as exporter.